Evaluating and Selecting Assessments

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Evaluatingand Selecting Assessments

Evaluatingand Selecting Assessments

Englishlanguage learners (ELLs) have been increasing rapidly among studentsubpopulations in the US classroom. Due to their large number, theyhave become an essential group to consider while developing andadministering assessments. Emphasis on the use of assessment as amethod for encouraging reforms on education become a challenge to ELLstudents because such learners are forced to demonstrate knowledgeusing a language they have only partial control over it (Smith,Teemant &amp Pinnegar, 2004).Thus, the interaction between language and content requires teachersto evaluate whether the difficulties of learners are due to lack ofproficiency in the language or lack of knowledge in content. Theteachers of ELL students should, therefore, employ assessment methodsthat will enable this learner to show what they know, support activelearning and teaching and identify the needs of the students. Thispaper will discuss the two important checklist items that can beemployed for assessment evaluation.

Variouschecklist items can be employed to evaluate assessments administeredto ELL students including feedback, feasibility, efficiency,validity, impacts, disclosure, fairness, reliability, participation,task and content. Feedback and participation are important checkliststhat can be employed to evaluate assessments administered to suchlearners. Starting with feedback, it evaluates whether theassessments is useful to the ELLs students and if it can guide suchlearners to the next step of learning. The feedback also evaluates ifthe assessment is improving the quality of work of students (Smithet al, 2004).The teacher should, therefore, give an assessment that caters for theneeds of every student and whose feedback can improve the quality ofELL students while observing their progress towards higher achieving.The assessments should also offer specific feedback to improve thework and thinking of each student as well assist revisions ofstudent’s work. Feedback will also help every student learn how andwhen to look for assistance that may be required in a group orindividual situations. The feedback enables the ELL students tobelieve that they can attain their highest set goals and see the wayto follow to achieve such goals (Albers&amp Martinez, 2015).Moreover, appropriate feedback enables the ELLs students to developtheir subject skills and knowledge.

Participationis another significant checklist for evaluating assessments given toELL students. Participation will evaluate whether the givenassessment is involving all the learners in the given task. Theassessment that encourages participation of students enhance theirconfidence. Thus, the assessment administered should enable thestudents to participate in the assessment process, communication andrecord keeping. When ELL student participates in the assessmentprocess, they can monitor their achievement levels. Under the propermanagement of the teacher, the students are involved in defining thecriteria that will be used to judge their work. Thus, they will learnto use these criteria, identify weaknesses and strengths in theirwork (Stiggins&amp Chappuis, 2005).This will eventually build the confidence and trust of such learners. Involving student to recordkeeping enable them to monitor theirperformance improvement over time. This enable them to gain controlover their studies. Also, when the ELL students participate incommunication, there can share their self-assessments with others.When learners are prepared to communicate their success, they feel afundamental change in their innate responsibility sense for thatparticular success. However, when students know that they will havelow achievement in the assessment, they may fear to communicate tothe parents regarding the smallest achievement. Hence, the student’sparticipation in communicating the achievement of the assessmentmotivates them to work hard.

Therefore,feedback and participation are essential checklists in evaluating theassessments administered to ELL students. Feedback evaluates whetherthe assessments is useful to the ELLs students and if it can guidesuch learners to the next step of learning. Participation allevaluates the level at which the assessment involves ELL students.Teachers should, therefore, use methods of assessments that willenable ELL learners to show what they know, support active learningand teaching and identify the needs of such students.


Albers,C. A., &amp Martinez, R. S. (2015).&nbspPromotingacademic success with English language learners: Best practices forRTI. NewYork: The Guilford Press.

Smith,Teemant S., &amp Pinnegar S., (2004). Principles and Practices ofSociocultural Assessment: Foundations for Effective Strategies forLinguistically Diverse Classrooms. MulticulturalPerspectives 6(2), 38-46.

StigginsS., &amp Chappuis J., (2005). Using Student-Involved ClassroomAssessment to Close Achievement Gaps. Theoryinto Practice44 (1), 11-18.