Assessment Twitter Chat

Join the conversation! All you need to participate is a Twitter account. You can follow along by visiting search.twitter.com, searching for #atassess or just bookmark this.

When? Every other Tuesday beginning August 16, 2016. The chats will be 9–10 p.m. Eastern.

Where? On Twitter! Search for #atassess.

Why? Meet fellow educators, ask questions, and work together to find solutions!


Twitter Chat Archive


Acceptable Alternatives – March 21, 2016

Moderator: Tom Schimmer (@tomschimmer), Assessment Center Architect
Topic: Assessment Architecture

Q1: How do you reconcile the orthodoxy of ‘not grading FA’ when parents need/want/expect regular updates to the online gradebook?

Q2: Respond: “How am I supposed to do standards-based learning when my courses (i.e. Choir, Band) don’t have published, universal standards?”

Q3: “Homework should never be graded” — how do we put this into practice when some teachers authentically believe students won’t do homework if it’s not graded?

Q4: How can you implement SBG when the grading program (or the district/state) requires %-based grade calculations?

Q5: Respond: “I would love to allow students to reassess every assessment, but I (authentically) don’t have the time.”

Q6: What other ‘acceptable alternatives’ have you utilized (or assisted others in developing) in order to advance the grading conversation?


“Fun-sessment”: Putting the Fun Back in Assessment – March 7, 2016

Moderator: Jim Smith (@MrDataGuy), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Student Investment

Q1: How can we use humor and imagination to lighten the mood and relive stress associated with assessment?

Q2: How can we innovate assessment to take away the anxiety of assessment while building hope and efficacy?

Q3: How have you used assessment in an imaginative way this year?

Q4: How can we use innovation and imagination in assessment for a student who has been on a trajectory of failure to find learning success and hope?

Q5: If we use humor in assessment, will it be taken seriously?

Q6: Without letting students use pen/paper, how can you accurately assess clear evidence of learning?


Changing the Mindset of Learners  – February 21, 2016

Moderator: Mandy Stalets (@MandyStalets), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Student Investment

Q1: What are some of the biggest struggles you have faced with changing the mindset of learners when it comes to sound assessment?

Q2: How have traditional assessment practices taught students to “play the game of school”?

Q3: How do we work to change the mindset of learners and take the focus off the grade?

Q4: How do we communicate our assessment purposes to learners?

Q5: How do we inspire students to always look forward and focus on what’s next, instead of focusing on what was?

Q6: How do we teach learners the value of ongoing self-assessment?

Q7: How do we make sure that learners not only read the feedback provided to them, but also act on it?


Formative Assessment and Leadership – February 7, 2016

Moderator: Cassandra Erkens (@cerkens), Assessment Center Architect
Topic: Instructional Agility

Q1: How are formative assessment and leadership alike?

Q2: How might PD be different if leaders shared targets and success criteria for & with Teachers?

Q3: If leaders want to know PD was successful, how might they ‘assess’ along the way?

Q4: How can Teachers receive and give better feedback with/for each other?

Q5: What currently stops Teachers from relying on each other as instructional resources?

Q6: Do current goal-setting/evaluation systems activate Teachers as owners of own learning in meaningful/productive ways?  Why/why not?

Q7: Modeling formative assessment practices is step one. How do leaders make their efforts transparent so all Teachers better understand formative assessment strategies?


Let’s Get Real About Assessment! – January 24, 2016

Moderator: Katie White (@KatieWhite426), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Student Investment

Q1: How do our current assessment practices enhance or kill student motivation? (E for Enhance & K for Kill)

Q2: What would be different if our assessment practices supported risk taking & productive failure in our day to day classroom?

Q3: How could we teach students to develop perseverance & persistence through assessment practices?

Q4: What would need to change if evaluation practices were used to increase achievement?

Q5: Given this conversation, what needs to be on our STOP DOING list for current assessment practices?

Q6: What needs to be on our START DOING list for new assessment practices?

Q7: How do leaders need to activate and support the start/stop doing lists?


Talking Grading… – January 10, 2016

Moderator: Mandy Stalets (@MandyStalets), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Assessment Architecture

Mandy Stalets is “talking grading” as she leads the #ATAssess conversation with the following questions:

Q1: I want to make the change to sound grading practices, but my school has not implemented SBG. What is my first step?

Q2: How can I best communicate to parents the changes I am making and why these changes are beneficial and necessary?

Q3: I understand that students don’t all learn at the same time. How do I manage reassessment?

Q4: I plan to change the way I provide feedback to make it more effective. How can I guarantee students read it & act upon it?

Q5: My school still has traditional letter grades. How do I teach students to focus on their learning, not the grade?

Q6: What are your favorite resources you can share to help me with my journey?


Name an assessment practice… – December 20, 2016

Moderator: Katie White (@KatieWhite426), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Assessment Architecture

In this week’s chat, we will share specific practices that support certain outcomes. Please be as specific as possible in naming practices. How are these outcomes really supported in our classrooms and schools? In tonight’s chat, I’ll share a desired outcome (Q1, Q2, etc) and we’ll name an assessment practice that supports it (A1, A2).

Q1: Name an assessment practice that supports student confidence.

Q2: Name an assessment practice that supports teacher confidence.

Q3: Name an assessment practice that supports effective teaching.

Q4: Name an assessment practice that supports differentiated learning.

Q5: Name an assessment practice that supports family engagement.

Q6: Name an assessment practice that supports deep thinking.


The PLC and…educators as students of their teaching? – December 6, 2016

Moderator: Jim Smith (@MrDataGuy), Assessment Center Associate; Paul Maeker (@PaulaMaeker), PLC Associate
Topic: Assessment Architecture

The core work of PLC, as reflected in the 4 questions of PLC, looks at evidence of learning – and taking action. We assess students, provide feedback for their reflection, and together plan the next steps in learning – but how do we assess our work as a PLC? If assessment is good for the student, it’s also good for educators. John Hattie talks about “students becoming teachers of their own learning and teachers becoming students of their teaching.” Tonight’s topic; how do PLC’s help educators become students of their teaching?

Tonight is a dual effort of the #ATAssess and #atplc chats

Assessment Associate, Jim Smith @Mr.DataGuy and PLC Associate @PaulaMaeker combine forces for this chat.  Thanks also to #ATAssess co-moderators @Mandystalets and @Katiewhite426

Reflecting on your PLC

Q1: What is a good balance between analyzing assessment results (data or student work) and planning next steps in learning (data use)?

Q2: At times, an instructional response to formative assessment must be made quickly. How is this decision communicated to the team? (timely collaboration)

Q3:  How do you assess the results of your team or PLC collaboration and identify the evidence of your collaborative success? (PLC effectiveness)

Q4: The work of PLC is the work of learning. How do you keep the focus of collaboration time from being distracted from this core work? (mission creep)

Q5:  Is your PLC a school/system-wide movement or is it work being done by selective teams and how can this be assessed? (growing as a PLC)

Q6: High performing PLCs require moving beyond compliance to a culture of shared collective commitments. How can this process be assessed and next steps built? (qualitative measures)


Softening the Edges – November 22, 2016

Moderator: Katie White (@KatieWhite426), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Assessment Architecture


Assessment and Grading – October 25, 2016

Moderator: Mandy Stalets (@MandyStalets), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Assessment Architecture


Softening the Edges – October 12, 2016

Moderator: Katie White (@KatieWhite426), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Assessment Architecture


Learning Outcomes Backwards – September 28, 2016

Moderator: Jim Smith (@MrDataGuy), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Assessment Architecture


Talking Formative Assessment – September 13, 2016

Moderator: Mandy Stalets (@MandyStalets), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Assessment Architecture


Solution Tree Assessment Center Part 2 – August 30, 2016

Moderator: Jim Smith (@MrDataGuy), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Assessment Architecture


Solution Tree Assessment Center – August 16, 2016

Moderator: Jim Smith (@MrDataGuy), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Assessment Architecture


Assessment and Family Engagement – June 7, 2016

Moderator: Mandy Stalets (@MandyStalets), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Student Investment


Assessment…the Antidote for High-Stakes Testing – May 25, 2016

Moderator: Jim Smith (@MrDataGuy), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Student Investment


Assessment and Creativity – May 10, 2016

Moderator: Katie White (@KatieWhite426), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Assessment Architecture


Assessment and Student Investment – April 26, 2016

Moderator: Mandy Stalets (@MandyStalets), Teacher
Topic: Student Investment


 Assessment and Responding to Student Needs – April 12, 2016

Moderator: Jim Smith (@MrDataGuy), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Student Investment


Instructional Agility – March 29, 2016

Moderator: Jim Smith (@MrDataGuy), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Instructional Agility


Assessment and Empowerment – March 15, 2016

Moderator: Jim Smith (@MrDataGuy), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Assessment Architecture


Interpreting Assessment Results – October 15, 2015

Moderator: Angie LaBounty (@angielabounty), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Assessment Architecture


Instructional Agility – October 8, 2015

Moderator: Katie White (@kw426), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Instructional Agility


Assessment Architecture – October 1, 2015

Moderator: Nicole Vagle (@NicoleVagle), Assessment Center Architect
Topic: Assessment Architecture


Assessment Purposes – September 24, 2015

Moderator: Mandy Stalets (@mandystalets), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Assessment Purposes


Communicating Assessment Results – September 17, 2015

Moderator: Garnet Hillman (@garnet_hillman), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Assessment Purposes


Classroom Assessments That Build Investment – September 10, 2015

Moderator: Jim Smith (@MrDataGuy), Assessment Center Associate
Topic: Student Investment