BOX 2–2 Methods for Observing Children’s Rules for Solving Balance-Scale Problems
Below are descriptions of the kinds of problems Siegler (1976) crafted to observe which rules children are using to solve balance-scale problems. Children who use different rules produce different patterns of responses to these six problems:
SOURCE: Siegler (1976). Used by permission of Academic Press.
competency. In the context of classroom assessment, the interpretation is often made less formally by the teacher, and is usually based on an intuitive or qualitative model rather than a formal statistical one.
Returning to the example of Siegler’s balance-scale problems, one example of an interpretation method is presented in Box 2–3. In this example the interpretation framework specifies patterns of response to the six problems and the corresponding rule, if any, that one can infer a student is using.
A crucial point is that each of the three elements of the assessment triangle not only must make sense on its own, but also must connect to each of the other two elements in a meaningful way to lead to an effective assessment and sound inferences.