Formative Assessment Tools

Focusing formative assessment on a small number of skills or “moves” with writing, rather than all possible revisions and edits, can help writers improve their writing and internalize new writing practices and strategies. This is as true of non-fiction, source-based argument writing as of other writing types. We see formative assessment as part of a cycle of writing and learning in which:

Teachers TEACH source-based argument writing; 

Students WRITE source-based arguments;

Teachers, working in community, use a common lens to ANALYZE what students are doing; and 

Teachers IDENTIFY and DEVELOP instructional next steps.

C3WP’s Formative Assessment Tools

C3WP’s formative assessment tools are designed to provide a common lens and language to describe what students can already do and identify next areas of focus for their writing. In order to focus on some practices, while blocking out others, each C3WP tool focuses on particular dimensions of source-based argument writing. The tools featured on this page were created to be used collaboratively by teachers as they plan for writing Instruction. 

Using Sources Tool (UST)

The Using Sources Tool (UST) is a formative assessment tool that teachers use in the middle of a cycle of writing to provide a focused look at the quality of students’ claims and how they select and use evidence from sources.

The Claim, Reasoning, and Evidence Analysis Protocol

Additional formative assessment tools and approaches, designed to be used in the classroom, are embedded in each mini-unit.

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