those of their classmates. When performed as a whole class, reviewing helps make explicit to all students the key concepts to be covered.

Selected response and written assessments, homework, and classwork all serve as valuable assessment activities as part of a teacher 's repertoire if used appropriately. The form that the assessment takes should coincide with careful consideration of the intended purpose. Again, the use of the data generated by and through the assessment is important so that it feeds back into the teaching and learning.

As shown in Table 4-1, McTighe and Ferrara (1998) provide a useful framework for selecting assessment approaches and methods. The table accents the range of common assessments available to teachers. Although their framework serves all subject-matter areas, the wide variety of assessments and assessment-rich activities could be applicable for assessments in a science classroom.

TABLE 4-1 Framework of Assessment Approaches and Methods


Selected-Response Format

Constructed-Response Format

  • Multiple-choice

  • True-false

  • Matching

  • Enhanced multiple choice

Brief Constructed Response

Performance-Based Assessment

  • Fill in the blank

  • Word(s)

  • Phrase(s)



Process-Focused Assessment

  • Short answer

  • Sentence(s)

  • Paragraphs

  • Label a diagram

  • “Show your work”

  • Visual representation

  • Essay

  • Research paper

  • Story/play

  • Poem

  • Portfolio

  • Art exhibit

  • Science project

  • Model

  • Video/audiotape

  • Spreadsheet

  • Lab report

  • Oral presentation

  • Dance/movement

  • Science lab demonstration

  • Athletic skill performance

  • Dramatic reading

  • Enactment

  • Debate

  • Musical recital

  • Keyboarding

  • Teach-a-lesson

  • Oral questioning

  • Observation (“kid watching”)

  • Interview

  • Conference

  • Process description

  • “Think aloud”

  • Learning log

SOURCE: McTighe and Ferrara (1998).

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