د/ايمان زغلول قاسم

استاذ تكنولوجيا التعليم المشارك بكلية التربية بالزلفي

book B5

Furthermore, the term data-driven decision making (DDDM)—also called data-based
decision making (DBDM) in the more recent literature—is often associated with formative
assessment. DDDM originated in the USA as a direct consequence of the No Child Left
Behind (NCLB) Act, which defines improving students‘ learning outcomes by focussing on
results and attaining specified targets (Wayman, Spikes, & Volonnino, 2013). Furthermore,
diagnostic testing (DT) is often referred to as formative assessment. DT was initially used to
refer students to special education, particularly those diagnosed as unable to participate in
mainstream educational settings (Stobart, 2008). In DT, detailed assessment data about a
learner‘s problem solving are collected to explain his or her learning process and learning
outcomes (Crisp, 2012; Keeley & Tobey, 2011). In some studies, the terminology of all these
approaches to assessment is used interchangeably and often inappropriately. For example, the
literature on DDDM tends to cite sources concerning AfL, but not vice versa (e.g., Swan &
Mazur, 2011). Although all these approaches can contribute to and support student learning,
they are different in their theoretical underpinnings and the levels to which they apply in the
school setting.
In this dissertation, formative assessment is viewed as an overarching and broad
concept that encompasses various approaches that include specific ways in which assessment
can be used to support learning. The following working definition will be used in this
dissertation: Formative assessment is any assessment that provides feedback that is intended
to support learning and can be used by teachers and/or students.
In this definition, the term support relates to both cognitive and metacognitive support,
although the focus of this dissertation concerns the cognitive effects of formative assessment.
Furthermore, in this definition, the concept of support is not restricted to the student, but also
refers to the learning of teachers, although the focus of this dissertation is student learning.
Furthermore, the term feedback refers to both the information resulting from assessments that
provide teachers and other stakeholders with insights into student learning and the feedback
provided to students based on their responses to an assessment task that is intended to steer
their learning processes directly (Sadler, 1989).
1.2 Feedback
Feedback is viewed as one of the most powerful means to enhance student learning
(Hattie & Gan, 2011; Hattie & Timperley, 2007). Namely, providing students with feedback
makes it possible to fill the gap between what students know and what they are supposed to
know, whereas teachers need feedback in order to determine where students are in their
learning process and to adapt teaching activities to the actual needs of students (Sadler, 1989;
Stobart, 2008). This section elaborates the aspects that influence the effectiveness of feedback
on learning and offers a typology of item-based feedback.
Hattie and Timperley (2007) defined feedback as ―information provided by an agent
(e.g., teacher, peer, book, parent, self, experience) regarding aspects of one‘s performance or
understanding‖ (p. 81). In the context of educational assessment, various agents that can
provide or receive feedback can be distinguished. For example, a teacher can provide
feedback to students, a student can provide feedback to one of his or her peers, or a test result
can provide feedback about student learning to a teacher. In early definitions (e.g.,
Ramaprasad, 1983; Sadler, 1989), feedback required the actual use of the information

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