Formative assessment: the most cost-effective way to improve education – but how do we know?

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Reading time: 4 minutes. Related programe: Embedding Formative Assessment

Dylan Wiliam, emeritus professor of educational assessment at UCL, explains the evidence for the cost-effectiveness of formative assessment.

Twenty years ago, Paul Black and I published an article on the impact of classroom assessment practices on student learning. We began by looking at the effects that tests, exams, grades, and other ways of reporting student achievement had on students’ motivation and attitudes to learning. Predictably, we found that such reports often had a demotivating effect, which tended to…

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