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Authentic Assessment

  • By: Kristin Powers
  • In: Encyclopedia of School Psychology
  • Edited by: Steven W. Lee
  • Subject:School/Educational Psychology (general), School Psychology, Educational Psychology

Authentic assessment requires the respondent to construct, rather than select, a response to academic stimuli (e.g., tests, papers) (Salvia & Ysseldyke, 2001). A rubric, based on set criteria, is used to evaluate and assign a number or proficiency level to the response. Authentic assessments are typically performance or portfolio assessments designed to measure complex skills such as synthesis, analysis, and collaboration (Vanderwood & Powers, 2002). For example, an authentic assessment may require a group of students to collaborate on analyzing and synthesizing disparate information on a country in order to formulate international policy for that country to be delivered in a mock United Nations address. Table 1 provides additional examples of authentic assessments.

Table 1 Examples of Authentic Assessments
AssessmentPossible Candidate
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