Using a Measurement Paradigm to Guide Classroom Assessment Processes

  • Sandy Heldsinger
Part of the Studies in Educational Leadership book series (SIEL, volume 15)


Much that has been written on educational assessment and measurement appears to set up dichotomies. Assessments are classified as criterion or norm referenced, or as summative or formative; and more recently, a distinction has been made between “assessment for learning” or “assessment of learning.” Perhaps, the starkest dichotomy is the one created between teaching and assessment. In this chapter, I draw on concepts that are inherent in the measurement paradigm, the concept of a continuum and the concept of latent and manifest ability, to show that the dichotomies discussed in the literature are not fundamental but are rather a matter of emphasis. In doing so, I hope to consolidate some of the present discussion in the literature about the purpose and value of assessment. My overarching aim in this chapter is to show why teacher judgment is at the heart of all our work in assessment.


Qualitative Difference Score Point Halo Effect Student Ability Student Development 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



I would like to acknowledge the contribution of my colleagues Professor David Andrich and Associate Professor Irene Styles at the Graduate School of Education, UWA, in shaping my thinking on assessment processes, and in particular, I would like to acknowledge the central contribution of Dr. Stephen Humphry.

I would also like to acknowledge the key contributions of Jocelyn Cook, Genevieve Palmer, Martina Bovell, Bronwyn Davies, Jan Brandreth, and the WALNA marking team leaders to the writing research.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Western AustraliaCrawleyAustralia

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