Title Thumbnail

Beyond Testing

Seven Assessments of Students and Schools More Effective Than Standardized Tests

Deborah Meier Matthew Knoester

160 pages
Teachers College Press
2019 AESA Critics' Choice Award Winner! The authors of this timely book argue that a fundamentally complex problem—how to assess the knowledge of a child—cannot be reduced to a simple test score. Beyond Testing describes seven forms of assessment that are more effective than standardized test results: (1) student self-assessments, (2) direct teacher observations of students and their work, (3) descriptive reviews of the child, (4) reading and math interviews with children, (5) portfolios and public defense of student work, (6) school reviews and observations by outside professionals, and (7) school boards and town meetings. These assessments are more honest about what we can and cannot know about children’s knowledge, skills, and dispositions, and are more adaptable to varying educational missions. Readers can compare and contrast each approach and make informed decisions about what is most appropriate for their school. Book Features: Legendary educator Deborah Meier’s thinking on assessments as they relate to the central goal of educating for democracy. Effective approaches for getting to know the strengths and challenges of individual students and schools. Multiple examples of children and schools for each assessment. A case study of 38 successful high schools in New York using performance assessments in place of standardized tests.
Author Bio
Deborah Meier has spent 50 years working in public education as a teacher, principal, writer, and advocate, and received a MacArthur “genius” Award for her work in East Harlem, New York City. Matthew Knoester is an associate professor of educational studies at Ripon College and author of Democratic Education in Practice: Inside the Mission Hill School.