Supporting Optimal Student Assessment Practices in Science as a Core Subject Area

  • Ann ShermanEmail author
  • Leo MacDonald
Part of the The Enabling Power of Assessment book series (EPAS, volume 3)


This chapter discusses assessment in inquiry-based science classrooms. Three classroom scenarios are examined for ways that they support assessment for learning. Implications are provided for teachers and school leaders to consider when seeking to implement effective assessment approaches in science classrooms. We suggest that school leaders can enable assessment for learning by having focused conversations with teachers about their science lessons. Teachers, who are encouraged to create learning environments where students take ownership and control of their learning, open up their classrooms in ways that allow them to engage in meaningful conversations and observations with their students. Classroom teachers will then be better able to carry out the kinds of assessment that provide the most powerful feedback for students and help them develop accurate interpretations of their students’ science learning. We argue that teaching science through an inquiry-based approach offers substantial opportunity for enacting assessment for learning strategies.


Science assessment Formative Assessment for learning Preservice Motivation and assessment Performance assessment Assessment of conversation Self-assessment Peer assessment Success Leadership 


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of EducationUniversity of New BrunswickFrederictonCanada
  2. 2.Faculty of EducationSt. Francis Xavier UniversityAntigonishCanada

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