OWIS Parent Partnership Series: Assessments in Secondary School

Recently, Dr Tracy Ghomashchian, Head of Secondary School at OWIS, held a session for the parents of our Secondary students. She explained how OWIS Nanyang relies on high-quality learning and assessments to help your child learn.

Here are some of the highlights from the presentation.

Types of Assessments at OWIS

As a Cambridge International School and IB World School, data collection is an integral part of our daily operations. With data, our entire school operates more efficiently and effectively. We use high-quality learning and high-quality assessments to collect and evaluate data that helps us verify the success of your child and our instructors. We rely on data to promote transparency for both students and parents. As a result, children know exactly what they have learnt, what they should be learning,  and what they have yet to learn. Instructors also use data to incorporate effective teaching strategies, share the proper information and ensure your child retains every aspect of the curriculum.

Our teachers use various assessment tools and techniques to empower your child’s educational growth and to verify that your child is learning successfully.

Assessments that Show Students’ Progress

Summative assessments include formal quizzes and tests that measure your child’s knowledge, proficiency and skills and show your child where they are at different points in the school year. Your child uses these assessment results to evaluate what they have learned, understood, and retained from the unit’s lessons, classwork and projects. Summative assessments also give instructors a big-picture understanding of their effectiveness as teachers. We use these assessments to demonstrate that our teachers and students are achieving learning objectives in accordance with our curriculum. As parents, you can see the results of summative assessments online.

Assessments that Offer Real-Time Feedback

In addition to summative assessments, which evaluate what your child has learned over the past few days or weeks, we also implement formative assessments. This timely and accessible strategy involves in-the-moment data collection. Our teachers walk around the classroom and observe children working independently or in a group, or they evaluate worksheets and projects. We can then offer immediate feedback on assignments and techniques. Through formative assessments, our teachers can see the learning gaps, misunderstandings or misconceptions they need to address. This in-the-moment feedback moves learning forward in real time, addresses challenges and difficulties and encourages advanced techniques or study opportunities.

Benefits of our Approach to Student Assessments

Assessments Promote Student Responsibility

Assessments play a role in helping your child take responsibility for their educational success. They help children evaluate their work and discover where they are with the curriculum content. This student-led approach shows your child what they already know and what they still have to learn. Your child can then take steps to learn the content they’ve not yet mastered or, perhaps, even pursue further study in an interesting topic.

Assessments Help Teachers

We have experienced, professional and supportive instructors. In fact, they have undergone a 10-day training on high-quality learning and assessments, as well as the technical support platform SATCHEL.

As a leading international school in Singapore, we use these tools to put your child first and support their growth. We are committed to analysing data and finding out how we can improve our instructional techniques, strategies and methods. Assessment results demonstrate areas where we can offer additional classroom instruction or explanation that support and challenge your child. They help us enhance your child’s learning experience both in the moment and throughout the year.

Assessments Support All Children

As an inclusive school, supporting students at all levels is a core practice at OWIS Nanyang. Assessments are essential for the success of all our students and help us support children of all learning abilities, interests and skills. Gifted learners can use assessment results to push themselves further and research advanced topics. Struggling learners can use these results to refresh their understanding of previously taught topics and further deepen their knowledge.

Additionally, as an international school offering the IB Programme, we recognise that every student brings different experiences, educational backgrounds and knowledge retention abilities. This perspective allows us to personalise education for your child, and we use assessments to establish a baseline. Then, we can offer meaningful instruction based on their actual needs instead of teaching what your child already knows.

Assessments Reduce Comparison

Our goal is not to rank students in order of success on a quiz or test because this approach compares children and may make them competitive. Instead, we encourage children to compete with themselves; so your child becomes motivated to continue improving. They develop an innate ability to self-regulate, pay attention, study and participate in class.

High-Quality Assessments in Action

High-quality learning and assessments support your child’s academic success. As parents, you can check Satchel and Managebac to see the content your child is learning and their assessment results. Then, start conversations with your child about what they are learning in class and encourage their development.