Brian Spina

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Return to: ETAP 623 Fall 2019 (Zhang) | Formative Assessment in a Mathematics Classroom


Brian Spina

About Me

Hello everyone. My name is Brian Spina and I am a graduate student at UAlbany studying Curriculum Development and Instructional Technologies. I am a high school math teacher. I teach Algebra 1 and Precalculus. Outside of teaching, I also coach soccer for both the school I teach at and a travel club.

Some of my interests:

  • Playing soccer
  • Hiking with my dog
  • Fly Fishing

My Topic and Purpose

The purpose of this course is to analyze the use of Formative Assessments in a secondary mathematics classroom. More specifically, this course will analyze the use of Entrance and Exit Tickets as formative assessments to use to improve instruction. This course will end with technology that can provide instructors an efficient way to administer and assess Entrance and Exit tickets.

Learning Outcomes

Learners will:

  • Understand the difference between Formative and Summative Assessments
  • Understand how Formative Assessment can be used to inform lesson development
  • Understand and know how to implement Entrance and Exit Tickets
  • Know how to analyze Entrance and Exit Tickets to inform instruction

Needs Assessment

Instructional Problem There are so many topics that need to be taught within each class. Students are asked to absorb a large amount of information over a quick period of time. The issue is how the teacher is supposed to keep track of whether or not the students are understanding the topics being covered. Assessments are supposed to be ways to gauge levels of learning. Whether summative or formative, assessments are indicators of student understanding. Formal testing is a good way of assessing student knowledge, but teachers need a way to assess understanding before any high stakes testing situation. The method must be quick so the teacher can address any issues that arise. Entrance and Exit Tickets are good formative assessments that allow educators insight to student understanding of previously taught topics.

Context/Learners Formative assessments, more specifically Entrance and Exit Tickets, can be used in most educational contexts, at any age levels. As named, they are to be used in the beginning or end of class. The learners for the course can be any level or subject teacher. These formative assessments are a tool for teachers to use to help gauge understand and use this information to guide lesson development.

Goals The goal of this course is for educators to come away with the understanding of formative and summative assessments. More specifically, educators will understand how Entrance and Exit Tickets can be used to inform lesson development in curriculum. Educators will be able to use these assessments in a time efficient manner that still allows room for the demanding curriculum time restraints.

Analysis of the Learner and Context

The learners that will benefit most from this course are secondary mathematics educators. It should also be noted that many of these techniques are not just math specific, but may be easily adapted for different subjects and grade levels. Formative assessment is used in every area of education and may be utilized to further inform the lesson development process.

This course can be used in multiple contexts. Educators may use it for personal learning to develop their own formative assessment strategies. Educators may choose pieces of the course if they have prior knowledge in some areas. For example, if an educator is well versed in formative assessment, they may use the Technology Module in order to develop more assessment tools. This course could also be used a Professional Development (PD) course. Formative Assessment should be used a step during lesson development and it is important that educators stay up to date with technology that may make it easier to do so.

Performance-Based Objectives

At the end of this course, learners will be able to achieve the following:

  • Given different types of assessments, learners will be able to identify what aspects of the assessment categorizes them as a formative or summative assessment.
  • Given a specific topic, learners will be able to use technology to create a formative assessment.
  • Given an entrance or an exit ticket, learners will identify areas of needs from a given topic.
  • Given the desire to formally assess understanding of a specific topic, use technology to aid in the assessment process.

Task Analysis

In terms of prerequisites, there are a few things that learners must be able to accomplish before getting the most out of this course. The learner must be able to take a given objective, or topic, and create a lesson around providing a path to understanding. After the lesson is created, the learner must first implement the lesson before being able to utilize this course. Assessment must be done after all of these steps are completed, then the information from the assessment may be used to help decide what the next step should be in lesson development.

Curriculum Map

Curriculum Map

References and Resources

Assessment: Definition of Assessment by Lexico. (n.d.). Retrieved November 11, 2019, from https://www.lexico.com/en/definition/assessment.

Cox, J. (n.d.). Teaching Strategies: Entry and Exit Cards. Retrieved December 5, 2019, from https://www.teachhub.com/teaching-strategies-entry-and-exit-cards.

The Glossary of Education Reform. (2015). Assessment Definition. Retrieved November 11, 2019, from https://www.edglossary.org/assessment/.

Haubner, J.P., Changy, S., Mancevice, N., & Herman, J. (2017). Lesson Revision: Improing Lesson Plans with Formative Assessment and College and Career Ready Standards. National Center for Research on Evaluation, Standard, and Student Testing. Los Angeles, CA. Retrieved from http://www.csai-online.org/sites/default/files/Lesson_Revision_With_Formative_Assessment.pdf.

Hicks, T. (2014). Make It Count: Providing Feedback as Formative Assessment. Retrieved December 1, 2019, from https://www.edutopia.org/blog/providing-feedback-as-formative-assessment-troy-hicks.

Larson, M.B., & Lockee, B.B. (2014). Streamlined ID: A practical guide to instructional design. New York, NY: Routledge.

The Many Uses of Exit Slips (2012). The Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. Retrieved from http://www.ascd.org/publications/educational-leadership/oct12/vol70/num02/The-Many-Uses-of-Exit-Slips.aspx.

Person. (2015). Gaining Understanding on What Your Students Know. Retrieved December 1, 2019, from https://www.edutopia.org/practice/exit-tickets-checking-understanding.

Renard, L. (2017). The differences between formative and summative assessment - Infographic. Retrieved December 5, 2019, from https://www.bookwidgets.com/blog/2017/04/the-differences-between-formative-and-summative-assessment-infographic.

Staff, T. T. (2019). 10 Smart Tools For Digital Exit Slips. Retrieved November 22, 2019, from https://www.teachthought.com/technology/smart-tools-for-digital-exit-slips/.

Watanabe-Crockett, L. (2019). 15 Assessment Activities That Are Fast, Fun, and Formative. Retrieved November 22, 2019, from https://www.wabisabilearning.com/blog/15-assessment-activities-fast-formative.

Wiliam, D. (n.d.). Five "Key" Strategies for Effective Formative Assessment. National Council for Teachers of Mathematics. Retrieved from https://www.nctm.org/uploadedFiles/Research_and_Advocacy/research_brief_and_clips/Research_brief_04_-_Five_Key%20Strategies.pdf.

Zook, C. (2017). Formative vs. Summative Assessments: What's the Difference? Retrieved December 5, 2019, from https://www.aeseducation.com/blog/formative-vs.-summative-assessments-what-do-they-mean.