GPA - The Importance of Formative Assessments and Lectures
Story By: Samuel Oh Editor: Eric Lee Web Designer: Claire Kim
The sound of students groaning is no longer an anomaly when teachers assign a grueling formative assessment or informs the class that there will be a quick, ten-minute lecture on a new concept. In fact, some students are indifferent about what the teacher is explaining about, neglecting information that may be useful for them in the future. On the other hand, there are those that are determined to finish a formative assessment, also taking multiple notes during a lecture. These students know that their prior knowledge would lead to much more efficient studying for a summative assessment.
Formative assessments are based on checking for understanding in an effective way in order to guide a student. They are used during instruction rather than at the end of a unit or course of study. Andrew Kim (8), when interviewed about the purpose of formative assessments, indicated, “Formative assessments help me understand topics thoroughly. Without them, I’d face problems studying for summative assessments and most likely score low on them.” If teachers use formative assessments correctly, there would be a high chance for a student to discover what they need to re-learn or review material they “didn’t wholly obtain.” These practice assessments furthermore establish usefulness not only as a key foundation, but also helps students learn more about a topic. As Andrew also mentioned, “practice makes perfect.”
Lecturing also plays a crucial role in guiding a student to score adequately on an exam. Chris Lee (8) and Eliana Kim (8), both students who claim to take notes during a lecture, emphasized, “I feel that lectures help me understand a topic better, rather than when I try to figure out something I’m not sure about alone.” Studying for an exam becomes less difficult but more effective if a student is attentive. These students are able to expand their knowledge on a topic as they are able to fully absorb the key ideas. A lack of focus on a lecture would lead to one missing out on essential information that is guaranteed to come out on the exam, and also panic due to the unawareness of what to review.
It is therefore extremely necessary to take all formative assessments and lectures seriously, as acquiring the needed information before an exam would require less effort and time studying. To be successful in dealing with exams, one must master the key concepts and facts about the topic.