Differences between Testing, Assessment, and Evaluation

What Do We Mean by Testing, Assessment, and Evaluation?
When defined within an educational setting, assessment, evaluation, and testing are all used to measure how much of the assigned materials students are mastering, how well student are learning the materials, and how well student are meeting the stated goals and objectives. Although you may believe that assessments only provide instructors with information on which to base a score or grade, assessments also help you to assess your own learning. Education professionals make distinctions between assessment, evaluation, and testing. However, for the purposes of this tutorial, all you really need to understand is that these are three different terms for referring to the process of figuring out how much you know about a given topic and that each term has a different meaning. To simplify things, we will use the term "assessment" throughout this tutorial to refer to this process of measuring what you know and have learned. In case you are curious, here are some definitions:

A test or quiz is used to examine someone's knowledge of something to determine what he or she knows or has learned. Testing measures the level of skill or knowledge that has been reached. Evaluation is the process of making judgments based on criteria and evidence. Assessment is the process of documenting knowledge, skills, attitudes and beliefs, usually in measurable terms. The goal of assessment is to make improvements, as opposed to simply being judged. In an educational context, assessment is the process of describing, collecting, recording, scoring, and interpreting information about learning.

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Why is Assessment Important?
Hopefully by this point in your life you have discovered that learning can be fun! You have probably also realized that you are constantly learning, whether you are in a classroom, a car, or a kitchen. Assessment helps you build confidence in your ability to learn. Perhaps you have heard that the global work culture is changing. Unlike your grandfather, you will probably have a number of different jobs and careers during your lifetime. In order to be successful, you will need to have confidence in your ability to learn and you will need to become a lifelong learner. Assessment plays a key role in developing your confidence in your ability to learn, as well as in developing your lifelong learning skills.

Thus. you want to know what will be on the test. Your instructor uses assessment to guide your learning and to communicate and reinforce what is important to learn. Will the instructor take off points for spelling and grammatical errors? If the test will contain essay questions. what's the first thing you ask? If you are like most students. any test is limited in its ability to assess all important information. Tips on what to ask about a test:    Ask what content will be covered on the test Ask what types of questions will be on the test Ask if each question will have just one correct answer or if you will need to select all answers that apply Ask how many questions there will be and how much time you will have to complete the test Ask about the criteria the instructor will be using to grade the exam. as well as the revised version of the essay?   . how much prior knowledge is assumed? Will the instructor allow you to turn in whatever prewriting or drafts you do. If you study effectively. However. When you are taking a course and the instructor announces that there will be a test or quiz. you will be prepared to answer most questions on the subject and therefore answer most questions from the subset that makes up the test. assessment determines if you are learning what your instructor thinks is important. You determine what's important to study and learn from knowing what is on the test. the questions on a test are a sample of the information that the instructor wants you to know.What Should You Know Prior to a Test? In classes.

In an open book exam you will likely be evaluated more on understanding than on recall and memorization. You may be expected to apply material to new situations. If the exam is an open book math assessment. It is very important to pay special attention to directives in open book exams.Types of Assessments Assessments can be delivered in a variety of ways. see: http://www. students will be expected to show detailed work as to how they reached their solution to the problem. analyze elements and relationships. Don't assume one is easier than another.net/essayterms. Open book exams (completed in class) Open book exams may consist of many different question types. and what options and resources you may need to consider. no matter what the delivery method is. Because students are given the opportunity to consult print resources.htm Tips for preparing for open book exams:     Stay current on readings and class assignments Prepare brief. and provide more details. concise notes on ideas and concepts being tested. students may be expected to use quotes.studygs. Open book exams test your ability to find and use information for problem solving and to deliver well-structured and well-presented arguments and solutions. expectations may be higher for answers to contain more detail and be more complex in their analysis of the question or statement. Terms & Directives Directives ask you to answer or present information in a particular way. . If the exam is primarily or completely essay. although the way you study might differ depending on the type of assessment. You need to prepare for all assessments. cite sources. Carefully select what you intend to bring with you to the exam Challenge yourself with how you would answer questions. For a list of words and explanations. Conventional Exams Typical exams are delivered in a proctored classroom setting with a specific period of time to complete a variety of questions and question types. and demonstrate that you have synthesized the material through the structure of your answer and how well you have provided supporting evidence for your answer. This type of exam is usually "paper and pencil" but could also be delivered via an electronic device like a computer.

and sections.List data and formulas separately for easy access  Tips for taking open book exams:    Read the questions carefully to understand what is expected Quickly review the number of questions and note how much time each could take First answer the questions that you are confident about and/or that will not require much time to check the resources Leave more complex and difficult questions for later Aim for concise. Use quotations . manageable summaries of content for each grouping.when you can not say it better in your own words       Quotations can be short A reference to a quote may be as effective as the quote itself Guard against overquoting – extensive quoting may detract from your point or argument. Pre-write answers to questions you anticipate might be on the exam and include your own commentary on the information that will provide fuel for your arguments and demonstrate that you have thought through the materials. . to mark important summaries.Develop a system of tabs or sticky notes. and thoughtful answers that are based on evidence.to illustrate a point or act as a discussion point . . Organize your reference materials: .Organize textbooks and source materials with your class notes for speedy retrieval and index ideas and concepts with pointers and/or page numbers in the source material .Make your reference materials as user-friendly as possible so that you don't lose time locating what you need .Write short.to draw on the authority of the source . accurate. color coding. . headings. . concept maps.Familiarize yourself with the format. etc. layout and structure of your textbooks and source materials.

If your instructor doesn't specifically address it. Take-home exams are often graded more stringently than in-class exams because you do have more time to complete your work. You will need to pay special attention to details and organization. . you will have more time to complete it compared to an in-class exam. ask if you are allowed to work on the exam with others or if you are to work alone. but you still need to study and prepare by organizing your materials and resources. as well as to directives. Working together on an exam that you are expected to complete individually is cheating.Open Book Exams (Take-Home) When you are given a take-home exam.

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