Figure 10.

Continuous learning cycle

Expanded with permission from Assessment Standards for School Mathematics, NCTM, 1995, p. 4.

from attention to testing and grading to seeing assessment as an ongoing process and to considering actions, like the use of open-ended questions, that support both assessment and instruction.

Gather evidence—before, during, and after the event—about teacher learning, through observation, discussion, and written evaluation. The more that staff development allows teachers to experiment actively with assessment, the more accurate will be the appraisal of their learning and their concerns about assessment. Just as the learning of mathematics needs a heavy dose of active investigation by the learner, so too does learning about assessment.

Interpret the evidence to determine what has been learned, and what are lingering or new concerns. As we will explore more deeply in Section VI, concerns about an innovation like alternative assessment change over time and require flexibility and a listening stance on the part of those who plan and deliver professional development. The following are some personal changes we have heard expressed:

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