What Is a Summative Assessment and How to Cope With It?
Do you relate to the type of students that sleep five hours a day and eat only when someone reminds them? We can understand you. While studying, you need to complete numerous assignments. Some of them you need to complete in class, but most of them you have to do at home. Typically, you need to do only tests and summative assessments in class. Of course, you know what summative assessment is and you probably have experience in completing it, but you might still be afraid of this task, as many student s are. Primarily, this is because you never know which questions you will have to answer and this obscurity scares you.
What Is a Summative Assessment in Education?
It’s a nightmare for students and for teachers. “Why for teachers?” you wonder. We’ll try to give you the short answer. The level of your knowledge depends on you and on your teacher. The average level of knowledge in class reflects the teacher’s ability to teach, to inspire, and to find an individual approach to each student.
When students are told that scores that they get don’t influence their GPA, they make less effort and the results can be inaccurate. Therefore, summative assessments are held more often than formative. So, this type of assessment affects both your GPA and your teacher’s career. Hence you should take this assignment very seriously. Actually, the question “What are summative assessments?” is not as important as the question “How to write a summative assessment?” Let’s focus on the latter.
How to Prepare for an Assessment?
As a rule, teachers don’t inform students about assessments beforehand, therefore, you should always be ready for it. However, this task won’t be absolutely unexpected for you because you know that you will need to cope with it during the course. The question is “when?” We would like to share with you signs that can help you to predict an assessment coming.
- The teacher asks random questions from different topics. Has your history teacher recently asked you about World War I while you were studying World War II? Or, has your math teacher given you tasks with different formulas from the previous topic? Perhaps you should start revising all the topics that you have studied this year.
Teachers can’t tell you directly that you will have an assessment soon, but they can give you hints.
- The term or semester is coming to its end. Typically, assessments are held closer to the end of the semester before writing final test papers. The results of your assessment will help you to understand your lapses, and you will have the opportunity to cope with the final tests better. If you want to succeed with your assessment, you should start preparing for it a month before the end of the semester.
After noticing one or both of these two signs, you should scud home and revise everything, starting from the first topics in this semester. You have already received answers to your questions: “What is a summative assessment?” and “How can I foresee its coming?” And now it’s time to move to the most interesting and useful part. We have prepared some tips that will help you to get prepared properly:
- Start revising from looking through your notes. While studying, you probably make notes on each topic. Rereading your notes is the fastest way to recall in mind the entire topic. Also, you should find tests on each topic and try to complete them. You can find multiple-choice tests in some of your textbooks. If it is not enough, you can look for online tests to nail down your knowledge.
- Create schemes and tables. Perhaps, you can find completed schemes and tables with information that you need to memorize. However, it’s not the same. When you are completing a table or a scheme on your own, you understand information better. Better understanding leads to better memorizing.
- Find associations. To remember something new and difficult you should base it on the knowledge you already have. If you need to remember a word, you can associate it with something familiar to you. If you need to remember a date, you should find out which events took place on the date that you need to remember.
- Don’t focus on one topic. If you spend most of your time revising only one topic, you have a big chance of failing. During the assessment, you will need to reveal several topics, not only one. For this reason, you should pay proper attention to all topics. Your memory works better in critical situations, but you need to know at least the nuts and bolts of the topic so that you can remember the details. Therefore, try to overview each single topic. It will be better if you spend it on revising every topic in an hour than revising only one topic for four hours.
- Engage your friends. Though many parents think that children can’t study with someone effectively, we wouldn’t agree with this. We recommend that you cooperate with your classmates especially with those who also care about the scores. First, you should learn separately. Afterward, you can meet and ask each other tricky questions. Each memory is individual. While you can remember all dates brilliantly, your friend can memorize the names better. Therefore, you can provide each other with different information. While questioning, you will find out your lapses more quickly and you’ll have the ability to fill your knowledge gaps.
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