Making Moves: Formative Assessment in Mathematics

  • Making Moves: Formative Assessment in Mathematics

    Brent Duckor, Carrie Holmberg, and Joanne Rossi Becker
    A seventh-grade teacher finds that the notion of attention—to student and teacher thinking about student thinking—is key to orchestrating standards-based mathematical learning.
    Research on teacher professional learning has shown that formative assessment can improve student learning more than most instructional practices (Hattie 2012). Empirical evidence indicates that thoughtfully implemented formative assessment practices improve students’ learning, increase students’ scores, and narrow achievement gaps between low-achieving students and others (Black and Wiliam 1998). Practiced well, formative assessment holds promise for fostering equity. Given the role that students’ achievement in middle school mathematics classes can play in college-going trajectories (Balfanz 2009), articulating how formative assessment can support equity in mathematics classrooms is critically important.