Criterion Related Assessment in the Middle Years IB Program
Assessment in the MYP is based on observations of what a student can do and is carried out on a continuous basis. Students are not assessed on what they cannot do, but on what they can successfully achieve at different stages of their development. Instruction and assessment are designed to help students determine what the next steps on their path to learning should be. There is no such thing as an average student in the MYP. At the beginning of each school year, students are given copies of the criteria that they will work with in every subject, including a framework that describes in general terms weighted levels of achievement for each criterion. Teachers maintain a record of individual student attainment on a regular basis, and the students maintain a portfolio of their work. At the end of each unit, teachers assign tasks that determine students levels of achievement for specific learning objectives. When those tasks have been marked, and when teachers have determined that the assessment is valid, reliable, and judge according to common standards, parents receive a student progress report.
Throughout the year students and parents can discuss any strengths and weaknesses with each subject teacher and determine possible learning strategies that will enable personal growth in the immediate and long-term future. Formative assessment is an integral part of the learning experience and provides students with ongoing opportunities to reflect upon their learning and to understand what needs work or improvement. Skills and knowledge are taught through formative tasks. There are no external examinations in the MYP. Assessment standards and learning expectations are established by collaborative teams working within curriculum frameworks established by Alberta Education and the IB. Teachers use a variety of assessment tools to monitor and extend student's understanding of the knowledge and skills outlined by the IB and aligned with the highly-respected Alberta Program of Studies. Among the possibilities for these internal assessment tasks are: projects; class tests of a variety of types; coursework; group assignments; oral work; essays; practical work; demonstrations and reports; and performances.
Determining Year-end Grades
Assessment in the MYP is criterion related, which means that teachers measure student achievement against specified subject criteria rather than against other individuals in the class. For each relevant criterion, teachers make judgments about students performance at the time of assessment. Each criterion has a descriptor that explains as clearly as possible what each student knows, does, and understands.
At the end of each academic course, teachers make a "best fit" assessment of each student's achievement level with regard to weighted subject area criteria. Added together, these marks result in a criterion level total. This criterion level total, whose maximum range varies across subject areas, is used to determine final grades based on pre-set grade boundaries. Maximum criterion level totals for each subject area are:
June Report Card
On the June Report Card all eight MYP subject grades will use the 1 - 7 reporting format designated by the IB. This will be in addition to the usual percentage grade. For MYP subjects, teachers arrive at a summative grade by assessing students according to the following criteria.
Minimal achievement in terms of the objectives.
Very limited achievement against all the objectives. The student has difficulty in understanding the required knowledge and skills, and is unable to apply them fully in normal situations, even with support.
Limited achievement against most of the objectives, or clear difficulties in some areas. The student demonstrates a limited understanding of the required knowledge and skills and is only able to apply them fully in normal situations with support.
A good general understanding of the required knowledge and skills, and the ability to apply them effectively in normal situations. There is occasional evidence of the skills of analysis, synthesis and evaluation.
A consistent and thorough understanding of the required knowledge and skills, and the ability to apply them in a variety of situations. The student generally shows evidence of analysis, synthesis and evaluation where appropriate and occasionally demonstrates originality and insight.
A consistent and thorough understanding of the required knowledge and skills, and the ability to apply them in a wide variety of situations. There is consistent evidence of analysis, synthesis and evaluation where appropriate. The student generally demonstrates originality and insight.
A consistent and thorough understanding of the required knowledge and skills, and the ability to apply them almost faultlessly in a wide variety of situations. There is consistent evidence of analysis, synthesis and evaluation where appropriate. The student consistently demonstrates originality and insight and always produces work of high quality.