Assessment Without Tests

As teachers, we are often (not by choice) attached to the concept of assessment, either rightly or wrongly.

But rather than firing up the scantron, did you know that there are alternate ways for assessments to be carried out?

Today on, frequent contributing writer Jordan Catapano, who is a seasoned high school English teacher based in the Chicago suburbs, looks at some off-the-beaten-path assessment methods that you can use to measure student mastery of the material without giving a formal test.

Jordan’s ideas include:

Video Explanation
Teach the Class

Here’s how Jordan describes one new way to carry out assessment: “Make a Game: We all love a good challenge or competition. Ask students to demonstrate their learning by creating a new card game, board game, or gamified learning challenge that the whole class can engage in. Games are fun and help students draw upon otherwise hard-to-remember information. And when students can make a game that successfully incorporates elements of their learning, everyone wins.”

Jordan sums up today’s article thusly, in a paragraph entitled “Let Students Generate Make Their Test”: “Challenge your students by asking them, “What should a test on this look like?” At first, they might come up with the traditional multiple choice, matching, and true/false questions they’re accustomed to. But put students in the driver’s seat of their own application and push them to consider how the skills and knowledge would look in the real world. Ask your class to use collaborative design and take their own test to demonstrate in a practical manner how their knowledge and skills have applicable value.”

What do you like from the list above? What assessment would you add or change? Share your thoughts with our community in the comments below!