Page: 355-371 Author: NOVOTNÁ, K., KRABSOVÁ, V. Key words: formative assessment, summative assessment, questionnaire survey, self-evaluation, feedback, system of assessment, co-operative learning
The text presents an empirical study which on the basis of a case study of two teachers in a deliberately chosen school describes the mode of inclusion of some forms and techniques of formative assessment in the specific assessment system of the school and also presents the feelings of pupils and teachers bound to the specific form of assessment used by the school.
Formative assessment is a tool of pedagogic communication, it aids the development of metacognitive skills, increases the overall school success of pupils, develops all competences especially learning competences and encourages a just approach to education. Set against these benefits, however, are the high demands of formative assessment both on the teachers and on pupils. The definition of formative assessment is rather ambiguous worldwide. In this article we favour the concept of formative assessment as ongoing feedback, self-evaluation, assessment by contemporaries, criteria assessment, work with learning goals, the exploitation of the pupil portfolio and consultation between pupil and teacher.
The research was conducted using three research methods: observation of lessons in English and Czech, semi-structured depth interviews, and analysis of documents. In the analysis we concentrated on the elements of formative assessment mentioned above. In our view the teachers led pupils to an understanding of the subject matter by posing supplementary questions, modified further teaching on the basis of feedback from pupils, and provided pupils with comprehensible feedback. Parents too are becoming involved in the life of the school and assessment itself. From the point of view of pupils, the elements that were proving most beneficial were graphic assessment, the chance to correct their own written work, consultation with the teacher (in lessons and after teaching) and the meeting of class teacher, pupil and parents. From the testimony of pupils it is clear that they do not show any great interest in self-assessment, assessment by contemporaries and criteria assessment, and this may be the result of the unwillingness of children to educate themselves. Systematic work with self-assessment and assessment by contemporaries was not recorded. Teachers pointed out that the biggest obstacle to the introduction of formative assessment into practice was the demands it makes on time, but nevertheless praised the chance to provide pupils with concrete information and advice about their performance.