Most teachers would certainly takes assessment for granted considering the degree of dependence on commercially published materials without having realised the underlying and most crucially needed benefits of assessment. Fundamentally, teachers probably have to be reminded that assessment is what bridging teaching and learning without which teaching would be no value at all as Asraf and Ponnudurai (2008) put it forward “teaching and assessment are interwoven and cannot be considered as separate entities because assessment is an ongoing process”. And it should be noted by now that learning is a process by which at the end of the process there have to be a tangible outcome and very often it turns out not as what has been initially expected. “For this reason, it is imperative that educators have student learning outcomes data to better understand what is working and what is not, to identify curricular and pedagogical weaknesses, and to use this information to improve performance” (Kuh & Ikenberry, 2009). A failure to articulate the relationship between learning and assessment has resulted “in a mismatch between the high quality learning described in policy documents as desirable and the poor quality learning that seems likely to result from associated assessment procedures” (Willis citied in Gipps, 1994).
Black and Wiliam (1998, citied in Boston) define assessment broadly to include all activities that teachers and students undertake to get information that can be used diagnostically to alter teaching and learning. “Assessment refers to measuring learner performance (either before or after a teaching intervention, or both)” (Lockee, Moore & Burton, 2002). Huba and Fred (2000, citied in Muirhead, 2002) on the other hand, define assessment as the process which involves gathering information from a variety of sources to cultivate a rich and meaningful understanding of student learning. Therefore, teachers who equipped with good assessment skill would definitely capable of determining what is working and the next step to be implemented since “assessment used to determine the extent to which students are achieving the intended learning outcomes of instruction” (Gronlund, 2003). And since “one type of assessment cannot meet the needs of all audiences” (Asraf & Ponnudurai, 2008) a good teacher suppose continuously assessing students with wide variety of assessment approach “whether those assessment are incidental or intended” (.ibid).
Though it is evident that assessment of learning is growing, much more rapid and complete progress needs to be undertaken to better understand and describe what students should know, understand, and be able to do. By providing a compendium of good assessment for different type of purposes it is therefore contemplated that assessment would better impart the kind of information that would help makes the improvement of instruction.
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