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Sources of Assessment Data

A vision for the future is that assessments at all levelsfrom classroom to statewill work together in a system that is comprehensive, coherent, and continuous. In such a system, assessments would provide a variety of evidence to support educational decision-making. Assessment at all levels would be linked back to the same underlying model of student learning and would provide indications of student growth over time."

— Pellegrino, Chudowsky, & Glaser 2001

The graphic below illustrates how a standards-based assessment system that is comprehensive, coherent, and continuous might look. Such a system is described as “A range of assessments, from minute-by-minute to the annual state assessments, providing different levels of detail about student learning over time to be used for various decision-making purposes” (Heritage 2010).


Sources of Assessment Data

As Margaret Heritage explains in Formative Assessment, Making it Happen in the Classroom (2010), each level of assessment illustrated in the graphic above assesses “different sized chunks of learning, providing information on the degree to which students have progressed toward meeting specific instructional learning targets and, ultimately, to mastery of the content standard.”


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