Curriculum based measurement is one of the most informative forms of assessment when tracking the individual progress of a student. Considering this type of assessment is done so frequently, a teacher is better able to see the progress or digression of a student’s ability in the classroom in a more accurate manner. When students are constantly taking smaller tests, the problems that arise from test anxiety can diminish, a chart of exact data can be created to see the ups and downs, and the assumption of their ability is not measured by larger singular tests. In general, this form of assessing presents a more accurate measurement of where a student is at academically as it cancels out some of the outliers such as anxiety, bad days, and infrequency of testing.
When creating these more individualized forms of assessment the teacher needs to first find out the baseline of what the students understandings are of the content for the year. With that information, the teacher creates individual goals for the children to be tracked frequently throughout the year. From what we have learned through this class, it seems to be that when creating these goals, it may be beneficial to do so collaboratively with the student to build a stronger sense of purpose. Even when it comes to charting the data that is obtained, a student could even learn more about graphing and be held accountable for their learning by creating the graphs themselves. For example: in the fourth grade classroom that I am in now, students took a test at the beginning of the year of a bunch of random multiplication facts to see where their baseline ability was. From there they set goals of what they should be able to achieve on their weekly five minute assessors. After taking the quiz, the teacher writes down their scores and they create bar graphs in different colors showing where they are at weekly. Each student has the specific goal of increasing from where they started as well as increasing or staying the same as they did last week.
For larger scale content areas, this would be great to see how students are doing when first introducing a unit or some new piece of information. A teacher could give them a diagnostic test to see what they currently know, ask them what it is that they would like to learn and along the way collaboratively track their progress. With that information along the way, the teacher should either change the instruction to meet the needs of the students or keep it the same if they are learning the desired content and reaching their goals. That is the best part about CBM is that it gives the teacher an idea of where the students are at academically before the final test. By doing this, if students are not understanding a certain part the teacher will realize that earlier on and not on the final test when it may be too late.