This section provides a range of different resources that can help you prepare for the Assessment Cafe or enable your self-paced learning.

A conceptual framework to help you understand assessment has been developed around the big ideas of Assessment As, Of and For Learning. It is important that you understand these three different purposes for assessment as each requires appropriate strategies.

The following slide show explains the difference between each of these:

You may also read about 'Formative Assessment' which is ongoing assessment to inform teaching and learning (so both assessment as and for learning) and 'Summative Assessment' (generally conducted at the end of a unit and referring to assessment of learning). Other terms you might come across are 'Comprehensive Assessment' (as, of and for + assessing for deep understanding) and 'Authentic Assessment' (providing students with real purpose and context for assessments so that they are meaningful to them).

Prior to this Ideas Cafe, read the article by Lorna Earl titled Chapter 3: Assessment of learning, for learning, and as learning from her book Assessment As Learning: Using Classroom Assessment to Maximize Student Learning (Corwin Press, 2003).

Also view the DEECD Assessment Advice presentation which introduces Assessment As, Of and For Learning.

Serious about inquiring into this topic? This article: Rethinking Classroom Assessment with Purpose in Mind provides an extensive overview of what assessment as, or and for learning means for teachers and their classes. It has been produced by a number of Canadian Ministries of Education and endorsed as a key assessment document.

The following Edutopia video provides a clear rationale for these forms of assessment in their Introduction to Comprehensive Assessment of the longer Overview of Comprehensive Assessment

Assessment Ideas Cafe


At the start of this cafe, your facilitator will invite you to record questions you are interested in pursuing in relation to assessment. We have found that these generally fall into the following categories:

  • Assessment For Learning
  • Assessment As Learning
  • Assessment Of Learning
  • Assessment Strategies and Methods


The Edutopia movie 'Making Sure they are Learning' is an excellent example of Assessment For Learning in practice. Watch this movie as a group then discuss what you notice about her practice.

Small Group and Independent Reading

Your facilitator will steer you towards a reading or resource that is likely to assist you to explore your area of interest and questions related to assessment. This will generally be something to read or view related to the above four topics - Assessment For Learning; Assessment As Learning; Assessment Of Learning; Assessment Strategies and Methods. There is a folder of resources for each topic available but just choose one for today. You will find links to most of the Cafe resources below, plus some more for further self-paced learning.


After 20 minutes, take turns to share what you have learned and any new insights about the area of assessment that you chose to explore. While each person initiates part of the discussion, try to engage and build upon what they offer. This is generally where the most significant learning takes place.

Resource Investigation

1. Assessment For Learning

View (Choose one that is of interest):
  • A detailed overview of practical Formative Assessment Ideas from a Primary School in Scotland. A mix of assessment as and for learning strategies.
  • Teachers TV has two videos on Formative Assessment in Secondary Schools. You will need to click on the Teachers TV link, the search for Assessment. Scroll down till you find 'Secondary Assessment - Questioning' and 'Secondary Assessment - Formative Assessment'.
  • Year 10 students engaged in Assessment As and For Learning in a Geography class.
  • A multimedia presentation from Curriculum Corporation on how to give effective feedback to students - suitable for all year levels.
  • How do we know they are learning video on Edutopia

Read and Discuss (Choose one that is of interest):
  • Curriculum Corporation has developed an extensive website devoted to Assessment For Learning with examples of quality assessments in different disciplines. There are also self-paced professional learning modules on this site.
  • Assessment for Learning Resources - are also available on this Canadian site with a range of classroom based stories and examples. One example is the Learning Communities article which links teaching practice to student learning in community.
  • A selection of other readings are provided in the Assessment for Learning folder.

2. Assessment As Learning

View (Choose one that is of interest):
  • Peer-Self Assessment - this video explains how peer and self assessment can function as 'assessment as learning' in a primary school.

Read and Discuss (Choose one that is of interest):
  • This is an extract from the book Rethinking Assessment with Purpose in MInd and endorsed by a number of Canadian Ministries of Education: Chapter 4 Assessment As Learning provides an excellent overview


3. Assessment Of Learning

View (Choose one that is of interest):
  • The VCAA has developed a clear overview of what is expected of teachers in relation to Assessment Of Learning:
  • Rubistar provides step by step support to develop your own rubrics
  • DEECD has also developed materials related to the development of rubrics:

Read and Discuss (Choose one that is of interest):
  • Designing Multi-Domain Assessment tasks + one of the examples of a Culminating Assessment task provided in the resource folder
  • A selection of other readings are provided in the Assessment Of Learning folder.

4. Assessment Strategies

Read and Discuss (Choose a reading from the Strategy Folder):
  • Identify assessment strategies you already use and at least 3 new ones that you would be willing to add to your repertoire
  • Examples of different strategies are provided in the Assessment strategies folder.

Reflective Prompts
What does the expectation that assessment practices include assessment as, of and for learning raise for you in terms of new learning?
Assessment as learning is often something new for teachers to consider - look through the resources to see if you can find one new practice you would be prepared to try.
Reflection Post: How do you work out the entry levels of a new group of students - where they are developmentally in relation to an area of learning you are teaching?

Additional Support Materials

The Buck Institute of Education is a not-fo-profit foundation that has developed some excellent project based learning materials that help you to integrate assessment as, of and for learning into Unit or Project designs. They make available some templates that you can download. However we highly recommend their handbook and starter kits.

DEECD has created extensive resources to support understanding of assessment in this state.

Self-Paced Learning

DEECD has provided a range of Assessment Professional Learning Modules. While designed to be utilised with a facilitator, they nevertheless provide some useful scaffolds to guide self-paced learning if assessment is an area you want to explore in greater depth.

Contribution to Learning Community - Review one assessment resource that you found particularly helpful in relation to your Ideas Cafe question and post in your group's Project Space.