The assessment of teaching and learning is categorized into two categories, Formative and Summative Assessment. Formative Assessments are intended to inform the instructor through the act of gathering data and feedback from the students which in turn can be used to guide the instructor to revise their teaching approach to meet needs of the students in underperforming areas which were identified by the assessment. This process can help diagnose performance issues while allowing the instructors to implement a remedial course of action to address the issues. Formative assessments also serve a developmental activity for faculty.
Summative Assessments are intended to gauge the students’ level of success or proficiency at the end of an instructional unit. Their results can be measured against a benchmark or standard. Grades are assigned to this category of assessment along with feedback and remedial instruction.
Assessments are used to collect information based on one of the above listed formats. Examples of activities associated with Formative Assessments are course evaluations, students submitting research topic outlines and summarizing key points from a lecture. Surveys, which are discussed in another section, are another tool which facilities Formative Assessment. Summative Assessment data can be obtained through Quizzes, Assignments and Self and Peer Review.