K-12 Teaching and Learning From the UNC School of Education

Important Announcement about Online Courses and LEARN NC.

Important Message about LEARN NC

LEARN NC is evaluating its role in the current online education environment as it relates directly to the mission of UNC-Chapel Hill School of Education (UNC-CH SOE). We plan to look at our ability to facilitate the transmission of the best research coming out of UNC-CH SOE and other campus partners to support classroom teachers across North Carolina. We will begin by evaluating our existing faculty and student involvement with various NC public schools to determine what might be useful to share with you.

Don’t worry! The lesson plans, articles, and textbooks you use and love aren’t going away. They are simply being moved into the new LEARN NC Digital Archive. While we are moving away from a focus on publishing, we know it’s important that educators have access to these kinds of resources. These resources will be preserved on our website for the foreseeable future. That said, we’re directing our resources into our newest efforts, so we won’t be adding to the archive or updating its contents. This means that as the North Carolina Standard Course of Study changes in the future, we won’t be re-aligning resources. Our full-text and tag searches should make it possible for you to find exactly what you need, regardless of standards alignment.

Learn more

Related pages

  • Formative assessment: This reference article discusses the history, concept, and application of formative assessment.
  • Formative assessment resources: The practice of formative assessment can help teachers inform instruction and can improve student success. Often, however, conducting effective formative assessment is easier said than done. These resources offer strategies and support for educators to integrate more ongoing assessment into their teaching.
  • Cooperative learning: Cooperative learning is an instructional method in which students work together in small, heterogeneous...

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Summative assessments are cumulative evaluations used to measure student growth after instruction and are generally given at the end of a course in order to determine whether long term learning goals have been met. Summative assessments are not like formative assessments, which are designed to provide the immediate, explicit feedback useful for helping teacher and student during the learning process. High quality summative information can shape how teachers organize their curricula or what courses schools offer their students.1

Although there are many types of summative assessments, the most common examples include:

  • State-mandated assessments
  • District benchmark or interim assessments
  • End-of-unit or -chapter tests
  • End-of-term or -semester exams
  • Scores that are used for accountability for schools (AYP) and students (report card grades)2

According to the North Carolina Public Schools, summative assessments are often created in the following formats:

  • Selected response items
    • Multiple choice
    • True/false
    • Matching
  • Short answer
    • Fill in the blank
    • One or two sentence response
  • Extended written response
  • Performance assessment3

The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction explains that information collected from summative assessments “is evaluative and is used to categorize students so performance among students can be compared.”4