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Guidelines for Assessing Student Learning


Effective assessment design enhances student learning, and engages students with different learning styles. Assessment influences what a student interprets to be the important learning goals for a course. This article, from Brown University Harriet W. Sheridan Center for Teaching and Learning, provides a set of guidelines about designing assessments that promote students’ learning.

Key Points

  1. Provide spaced assessed tasks to enable students to allocate sufficient time to study over a suitable time period and avoid "cramming."
  2. Design the assessment so that students tackle the task appropriately, i.e., they engage in the process of learning rather than simply producing a final product.
  3. Give students the opportunity to practice the skills they need for each assessment.
  4. Provide sufficient and detailed feedback.
  5. Focus your feedback on student performance, learning, or actions the student can control.
  6. Provide timely feedback, or feedback that is given while it matters to the student and can be used to improve future performance.
  7. Align feedback with the learning goals of the assignment and the assessment criteria.
  8. Provide feedback that is appropriate to the student’s breadth and depth of background, experience, and level of independence.
  9. Feedback needs to be read and noticed.
  10. Feedback is acted on by the student.

Link to article


Assessments & Feedback