Compared to traditional assessments that omit the complex reasoning necessary for thinking mathematically, authentic assessments provide an opportunity for students to demonstrate their understanding by performing a particular task. According to Daniel Callison (1998), “Authentic assessment is an evaluation process that involves multiple forms of performance measurement reflecting the student’s learning, achievement, motivation, and attitudes on instructionally-relevant activities.” Authentic assessments move beyond an evaluation of discrete skills and examine the students’ content fluency through instructionally relevant activities. I utilize authentic assessments to appropriately evaluate the students’ ability to apply their content knowledge to a real life situation involving the mathematical reasoning relevant to the lesson. Instead of assessing the student’ ability to apply a formula, I am able to assess the students’ mathematical proficiency as they reason through the performance task, “Performance assessments reveal different levels of understanding of the mathematics content. Therefore, evaluations of student responses should focus on the content of the response, not its length” (Parke & Lane, 1996).
Additional Sources on Authentic Assessments:
- Authentic Assessment in Action – Edutopia
- The Challenge of Authentic Assessment – Edutopia
- 27 Characteristics of Authentic Assessment – TeachThought
- A Teacher’s Guide To Performance Assessment – TeachThought