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Professional development in formative assessment: Effects on teacher classroom practice and student achievement: Effects on teacher classroom practice and student achievement
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Science and Mathematics Education.
2015 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The potential of formative assessment, evident in several research reviews, has raised the interest in many countries to invest in reform initiatives to develop its use. However, implementation of formative assessment is not straightforward and there is a lack of knowledge about how to design appropriate professional development. The intervention study presented in this thesis aimed to see if a random selection of teachers, participating in a professional development program with many contact hours and substantial support of an expert, implemented formative assessment in a way that increased their students’ learning in mathematics. It also aimed to examine the reasons for the teachers’ changes in their classroom practice.

The twenty-two year 4 teachers attended a professional development program in formative assessment in mathematics. A mixed methods approach used classroom observations, teacher interviews, questionnaire surveys and student mathematics tests to investigate the effects on teacher classroom practice and student achievement.

It was found that the teachers trained in formative assessment built on their previous formative classroom practice and added new formative assessment activities into their mathematics classroom practice to a level that had significant impact on student achievement in mathematics (p = .036, d = .66). The teachers developed their formative assessment practice in three dimensions: key processes in teaching and learning, agents in the classroom, and the length of the formative assessment cycle.

The reasons for teachers ́ implementation of new formative assessment activities were well explained by the expectancy-value theory of achievement motivation. Important aspects of the professional development program were: (1) A formative and process-oriented character; (2) Activities directly useable in classrooms; (3) Experience of using formative assessment activities; (4) Connection between theory and practice; (5) Time; and (6) Knowledgeable support.

The thesis shows that it was possible to provide sufficient support to a random selection of teachers for them to develop their formative assessment practice in a way that improved student achievement. However, this thesis also indicates that it can be expected that teachers would need substantial time and support to achieve such developments in their classroom practice.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Umeå universitet , 2015. , 113 p.
Series
Doktorsavhandlingar i pedagogiskt arbete, ISSN 1650-8858 ; 1650-8858
Keyword [en]
formative assessment, mathematics education, professional development, teacher education, student achievement
National Category
Pedagogical Work
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-102394ISBN: 978-91-7601-256-7 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-102394DiVA: diva2:807530
Public defence
2015-05-22, Naturvetarhuset, N320, Umeå universitet, Umeå, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2015-04-30 Created: 2015-04-23 Last updated: 2015-05-08Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Formative Assessment in Swedish Mathematics Classroom Practices
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Formative Assessment in Swedish Mathematics Classroom Practices
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
National Category
Pedagogical Work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-102393 (URN)
Note

Manuscript april 2015

Available from: 2015-04-23 Created: 2015-04-23 Last updated: 2015-04-27Bibliographically approved
2. The characteristics of formative assessment that enhance student achievement in mathematics
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The characteristics of formative assessment that enhance student achievement in mathematics
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
National Category
Pedagogical Work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-102341 (URN)
Note

Manuscript april 2015

Available from: 2015-04-23 Created: 2015-04-23 Last updated: 2015-04-27Bibliographically approved
3. Reasons for teachers' successful development of a formative assessment practice through professional development: a motivation perspective
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Reasons for teachers' successful development of a formative assessment practice through professional development: a motivation perspective
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
National Category
Pedagogical Work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-102340 (URN)
Note

Manuscript april 2015

Available from: 2015-04-23 Created: 2015-04-23 Last updated: 2015-04-27Bibliographically approved
4. The impact of formative assessment on student achievement: a study of the effects of changes in classroom practice after a comprehensive professional development programme
Open this publication in new window or tab >>The impact of formative assessment on student achievement: a study of the effects of changes in classroom practice after a comprehensive professional development programme
2017 (English)In: Learning and instruction, ISSN 0959-4752, E-ISSN 1873-3263, Vol. 49, 92-102 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

A random sample of 22 Year 4 teachers in mathematics from a middle-sized Swedish municipality participated in a teacher professional development programme in formative assessment. The content ofthe programme was formative assessment conceptualised as a unity of different, integrated strategies.The study examines the effects on student achievement of the changes in the teachers’ formative classroom practice that followed the professional development input. Results show that, after controlling for pretest scores, the classes in the intervention group significantly out performed the classes in thecontrol group in a posttest administered one school year after the end of the programme (p = 0.036, d = 0.66). The study contributes to the understanding of under-studied areas of the impact of professional development in formative assessment, and the impact of teacher practice based on formative assessment conceptualised as a unity of different formative assessment strategies.

Keyword
assessment for learning, formative assessment, mathematics, primary school, professional development, student achievement
National Category
Pedagogical Work
Research subject
didactics of mathematics; educational work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-102335 (URN)10.1016/j.learninstruc.2016.12.006 (DOI)000403117400009 ()
Funder
Riksbankens Jubileumsfond
Available from: 2015-04-23 Created: 2015-04-23 Last updated: 2017-08-01Bibliographically approved

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