In education, there are two main forms of assessment, which vary according to their purpose.
Formative assessment is the continuous use of assessment to guide the teaching and learning process, rather than provide a summary of attainment. This is often referred to as ‘Assessment for Learning’. Cambridge Assessment has developed a specific ‘assessment for learning’ tool called achieve in partnership with Heinemann.
Summative assessment usually takes place at the end of a programme of learning in order to find out what has been learnt and what standard the learner has reached. This is the most traditional method of assessment and is most often applied to mainstream qualifications such as A Levels and GCSEs.
Listed below are the main types of assessment:
- Pen/pencil and paper – The traditional examination method
- Computer-based – Tests that can be taken on a computer
- Practical – Subject-specific activity which is observed
- Academic – Traditional qualifications for progress to Further and Higher Education
- Vocational – Work-related qualifications.