Teachers, administrators, government officials, and parents frequently ask the question “Are our students learning?”  To answer the question, we need measurement and reporting about how our students are progressing through learning the content and skills that are expected of them.  Those metrics come from a variety of assessments.  Each assessment has a particular scope and purpose to inform different stakeholder groups of the progress students are making towards learning goals.

  State AssessmentsDistrict and Interim BenchmarksClassroom Summative AssessmentsClassroom Formative AssessmentsIndividual Formative Assessments

CAASPP, CELDT, CAHSEE, Physical Fitness Test

Galileo Benchmarks, Early Literacy Assessments, SBAC interim assessments

End of Unit tests,

Exit tickets, Whiteboards,

Individual interaction with students

Content Scope

An entire year’s content

Large blocks of multiple standards

A unit of study, cluster of standards

Individual skills or standards

A particular skill or piece of understanding

Application to instruction

Long term, structural,

Programmatic, in week long cycles

Class progress, report cards

Near term support of student learning

Immediate support of student learning

Target audience

National and state officials, School districts

School administrators, teachers

Teachers, Parents

Teachers, Students

Teachers, Students


Once a year

3-5 times a year

6-10 times a year (per subject)

Daily to Weekly

Daily, nearly constant