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The role of frequent assessment in science education at an international school in Singapore

Written by: Jozef Bendik and Fabio Di Salvo
7 min read
JOZEF BENDIK AND FABIO DI SALVO, SINGAPORE Assessments used in schools often involve teachers administering end-of-unit or -semester tests with questions selected from question banks. The assignment of grades usually relies on either a teacher-determined scale or grade boundaries taken from previous terminal examinations. These methods can introduce inconsistencies into the evaluative process. Furthermore, students can become anxious about these large teacher-graded assessments, and this prevents them from using assessments as a learning device. In the science department at an international school in Singapore, we’ve initiated a project to produce a more consistent system, using smaller and more frequent assessments spread across the course called progress checks (PCs). PCs are tailored to evaluate a student’s grasp of subject matter within defined curriculum domains, and to provide the opportunity for students to reflect on their own study and assessment habits. Inspired by Ch

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