ERIC Number: ED366624
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Dec
Authentic Assessment: What It Means and How It Can Help Schools.
Archbald, Doug A.
Recent years have seen a new and serious commitment to improving methods of assessing academic performance. Schools, school districts, and states are experimenting with a wide range of assessment alternatives. This paper is about this new commitment to assessment and begins with some background on standardized tests because the rationale for authentic assessment requires understanding the purposes and limitations of standardized tests. It is argued that an authentic test is one that measures performance on authentic intellectual tasks in a way that reveals precisely what a student knows or can do. The second part of the paper discusses the potential of authentic assessment to improve curriculum and instruction. The following potentials are noted: (1) clarifying and legitimating high standards; (2) providing incentives for authentic instruction and tasks; and (3) providing more useful instructional and management information. It must be recognized that authentic assessment is costly and time-consuming, but its return is recognized in the fulfillment of the potentials described. Five figures illustrate the discussion. (Contains 41 references.) (SLD)
Descriptors: Context Effect, Educational Assessment, Educational Background, Educational Innovation, Elementary Secondary Education, Incentives, Logical Thinking, Mastery Learning, Performance Based Assessment, Rote Learning, Scores, Standardized Tests, Standards, Student Evaluation, Test Interpretation, Test Use
National Center for Effective Schools Research and Development, 1025 W. Johnson Street, Suite 685, Madison, WI 53713 ($8).
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Center for Effective Schools Research and Development, Madison, WI.
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A