Testing Is Not Only For Measure Learning Goals Essay

Testing Is Not Only For Measure Learning Goals Essay

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This article sheds light on how important it is that tests contain “context-rich” tasks to better prompt student’s conceptual understanding. The physics education research community believe the curriculum and testing should build on prior knowledge. Physics education researchers are trying to encourage the use of formative testing; “formative assessment refers to a wide variety of methods that teachers use to conduct in-process evaluations of student comprehension, learning needs, and academic progress during a lesson, unit, or course. Formative assessments help teachers identify concepts that students are struggling to understand, skills they are having difficulty acquiring, or learning standards they have not yet achieved so that adjustments can be made to lessons, instructional techniques, and academic support.” [2]
Testing is not only to measure learning goals but it also conveys what it is important to learn. Researchers realized this by comparing higher level students to lower level students. The higher level students understood the deeper concepts. Largely, assessments are not only to be systematic, researchers think it’s important that students refer to prior knowledge or infer the answers. It is important that conceptually rich problems are not only addressed through assessment it must also be a part of the instructional process. Assignments and assessments must both challenge the students understand of conceptually rich ideas as well as scientific reasoning while maintaining consistency with both. Research shows that teaching this way promotes the retention of real learning goals and improves learning overall. There are contemporary theories of learning that say how knowledge is organized in the mind and how participati...

... middle of paper ...

...arned in a variety
of contexts [4].” Luckily, “the physics education research community is well aware of the importance of explicit representations of learning goals as well as the role of the formative assessment process, especially feedback and self-assessment, in promoting or deterring students’ engagement and willingness to take responsibility for their own learning.” [1] So we have them to thank for assessment reforms in context rich activities that prompt student’s conceptual understanding. The moment testing became more about grades and less about learning was when they became ineffective in proving how much one has learned. Through this article it’s clear that these issues are prominent and are not unnoticed. There are research communities who are trying to reform assessments so that they are testing and hopefully learning can get back to what is important.

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