Stiggins, R. (2004, September). New assessment beliefs for a new school mission. Phi Delta Kappan, 86(1), 22-27.
Stiggins argues that the focus on standardized tests in U.S. schools has prevented educators from fully using assessments to support school improvement. The author maintains that day-to-day classroom assessment has the potential to improve student achievement and increase school effectiveness. Stiggins discusses why standardized tests are inadequate as a school’s primary source of assessment data to inform improvement efforts, and highlights mistaken beliefs regarding the use of assessment to improve schools (e.g., high-stakes standardized tests motivate students to learn). The author maintains that in order to fully tap into the potential of assessments to improve student learning, educators must achieve a balance between standardized tests of learning and classroom assessments for learning. Siggins further discusses the benefits of a balanced assessment system and the impact on student achievement. The author concludes with key beliefs needed to support this new balanced assessment system.
Balanced Assessment System, Formative Assessment