Science Teaching Series

Internet Resources

I. Developing Scientific Literacy

II. Developing Scientific Reasoning

III. Developing Scientific Understanding

IV. Developing Scientific Problem Solving

V. Developing Scientific Research Skills

VI. Resources for Teaching Science

Task 4 - Assessment Commentary

Adapted from: PACT Handbook - Science Teaching Event Candidate Handbook 2008-2009; Performance Assessment for California Teachers

Write a commentary of 5-8 single-spaced pages (including prompts) that addresses the following prompts.  You can address each prompt separately, through a holistic essay, or a combination of both, as long as all prompts are addressed.  We strongly encouage you to use the numbering and titles below.

1.   Standards & Objectives: Identify the specific standards/objectives measured by the assessment chosen for analysis.  You may just cite the appropriate lesson(s) if you are assessing all of the standards/objectives listed.

2.   Measuring Student Proficency: How do the evaluative criteria (see sample rubric) measure student proficiency for these standards/objectives?  Evaluative criteria are performance indicators that you use to assess student learning.  Categories of evaluative criteria include understanding of a particular science concept, the relationship between two concepts, or the fit between evidence and conclusions. (TPE 3)

3.   Summary of Student Learning: Create a summary of student learning across the whole class relative to your evaluative criteria (or rubric).  Summarize the results in narrative and/or graphic form (e.g., table or chart).  (You may use the optional chart provided following the Assessment Commentary prompts to provide the evaluative criteria, including descriptions of student performance at different levels.) (TPEs 3, 5)

4.  Understanding, Misconceptions, and Needs: Discuss what most students appear to understand well, and, if relevant, any misconceptions, confusions, or needs (including a need for greater challenge) that were apparent for some or most students.  Cite evidence to support your analysis from the three student work samples you selected. (TPE 3)

5.  Analysis of Student Learning: From the three students whose work samples were selected, choose two students, at least one of which is an English Learner.  For these three students, describe their prior knowledge of the content and their individual learning strengths and challenges (e.g., academic development, language proficiency, special needs).  What did you conclude about their learning during the learning segment?  Cite specific evidence from the work samples and from other classroom assessments relevant to the same evaluative criteria (or rubric). (TPE 3)

6.   Feedback: What oral and/or written feedback was provided to individual students and/or the group as a whole (refer the reviewer to any feedback written directly on submitted student work samples)?  How and why do your approaches to feedback support students’ further learning?  In what ways does your feedback address individual students’ needs and learning goals? Cite specific examples and reference the three student work samples as evidence to support your explanation.

7.   Next Steps: Based on the student performance on this assessment, describe the next steps for instruction for your students.  If different, describe any individualized next steps for the two students whose individual learning you analyzed.  These next steps may include a specific instructional activity or other forms of re-teaching to support or extend continued learning of objectives, standards and/or central focus/big idea for the learning segment.  In your description, be sure to explain how these next steps follow from your analysis of the student performances.  (TPEs 2, 3, 4, 13)