This page contains activities, assignments, readings, and resources for teaching and learning about assessment in world language education.

Assessment Objectives

  • Students will identify products, practices, and perspectives associated with assessment in world language education.
  • Students will analyze and evaluate student projects to inform program development, lesson planning, and/or feedback.
  • Students will provide effective feedback on student work.
  • Students will develop 4-column rubrics for assessing student performance.
  • Students will generate an integrated performance assessment (IPA) for use in a world language classroom.

Can Do Statements

1) I can explain the purposes of assessment, key principles of assessment, and common assessment practices in world language education.
2) I can obtain information from student work to inform program development, lesson planning, and conversations with parents about student progress.
3) I can provide effective feedback on student work that improves their language development.
4) I can develop effective rubrics for assessing student performance.
5) I can create meaningful integrated performance assessments.

Guiding Questions

  • Why do we assess students?
  • What are some of the key principles of effective assessment in world language education?
  • How can teachers integrate performance-based assessment as an important component of proficiency-based world language programs?
  • What is an Integrated Performance Assessment (IPA) and how is it structured?
  • How can effective rubrics support teachers in "grading" IPAs?
  • How does one provide effective feedback that builds proficiency?
  • How might teachers share assessment information with various stakeholders to inform program development, lesson planning, and student performance?



0: Virtual Assessment Center

  • Work through the modules on this page

1: Assessment Graphic Organizer

(Brainstorming) - 10 min.

1) Get a graphic organizer and a partner.
2) Together, brainstorm everything you know about assessment.
3) Form a new group with 2 other pairs.
4) Discuss your answers with your new group.
5) Take additional notes on your graphic organizer. (You may use your notes on the upcoming quiz over this topic.)

2: Assessment Buzzword Bingo or Taboo

Activate Prior Knowledge

3:Discussion of Purposes of Assessment

1) Read the following questions:

2) Listen as someone reads Testing Miss Malarkey.
3) Listen as someone reads these 2 quotes:

"In a very real sense, tests have invented all of us. They play an important role in determining that opportunities are offered to or withheld from us, they mold the expectations and evaluations that other form of us (and we form of them), and they heavily influence our assessments of our own abilities and worth. Therefore, although testing is usually considered to be a means of appraising qualities that are already present in a person, in actuality, the individual in contemporary society is not so much measured by tests as constructed by them" (Hanson, F. Allan. The invention of intelligence. Education Week.)

"A grade is an inadequate judgment by a biased and variable judge of the extent to which a student has attained an undefined level of mastery of an unknown proportion of an indefinite amount of material" (Dr. Roger T. Taylor)

4) Discuss your thoughts about the questions in light of what you have read with one to three other classmates.

4: Analysis of Student Work

Contextualized Experience
(Discussion) - 20 min.

1) Get into a group of 4.
2) Get a salmon-colored DISCUSSION worksheet.
3) Obtain one folder from the box:
  • Capture a Concept Project
  • Family Food Project
  • Fashion Magazine
  • Pop-up Books
  • Spanish I Stories
  • Timelines
  • Top 10 Lists
4) Follow the instructions on the worksheet.
5) If you finish early, explore: Performance-based Assessment.

5: Giving Feedback

Focus on Meaning - (Role Play) - 10 min.

1) Read the cartoon on the screen. Consider: How does an athletic coach give feedback (content, processes, timing)?
2) Watch Austin's Butterfly.

3) Follow the instructions on the FEEDBACK worksheet.
4) Participate in the Feedback Role Plays:
5) Evaluate the feedback given using these questions:

Focus on Form - Does your feedback . . .
  • make time to listen to the students' evaluation of their own performance?
  • encourage students to invest more fully in their own learning?
  • focus on one to three things students have control over changing about their performance?
  • tell students the very next step they can take to improve their performance?
  • give students concrete strategies for moving their performance to the next level?

Feedback Cheat Sheet (Sentence Starters)

5) Explore the following tools which are being used in world language classes around the country. (Note: Although the instrument is portfolio-based and called Linguafolio, teachers frequently refer to it as "Can Do Statements:"

Having Difficult Conversations

Formula for Difficult Conversations


1) Step 1: Introduce the conversation - "Hey, do you have two minutes?"
2) Step 2: State your motive - "I need to talk to you."
3) Step 3: Describe the behavior - "I've noticed..."
4) Step 4: State the impact of that behavior
5) Step 5: Ask the other person for their perception of the situation - "What are your thoughts?"
6) Step 6: Make a suggestion or a request - "Would you be willing to...?"
7) Step 7: Agree on next steps
8) Step 8: Thank you - "Thank you for having this conversation. I know it was awkward."

"When you tell people the truth, you are doing them a favor."

Giving Feedback - 3 Funny Examples of Giving Feedback to Employees

6: Developing Rubrics

Focus on Communication - (Rubric Development) - 20 min.

1) Get a blank rubric template.
2) Eat some homemade bread (with butter & honey).
3) Work with a partner (or the whole class) to develop a rubric for "good" homemade bread. You may wish to use Rubistar.jpg or QuickRubricLogo.png.
4) Use these sample rubrics for inspiration:

Extension Activity (or homework):
Quickly examine some sample rubrics to give you an idea of how rubrics might be used in language classes:
  • Speaking
  • Speaking Outline
  • David Paulson
  • Group Project
  • Evaluation Scale

7: Integrated Performance Assessments (IPAs)

Guiding Questions:
  • Why is performance-based assessment an important component of proficiency-based world language programs?
  • What is an Integrated Performance Assessment (IPA) and how is it structured?
  • How does one "grade" an IPA?

Today's Agenda:

Activity 0: Final Interview Panel Demo

Activity 1: Course Review

Activity 2: Integrated Performance Assessments (IPAs)

  • Skim: This blog post on IPAs from the Creative Classroom
    • What generalizations can you make about assessment based on the information provided in this teacher's blog post?
    • How does this teacher's progressively expanding understanding of assessment influence your thinking about assessment?
    • Is this teacher effective? Why or why not? Be prepared to support your opinion with evidence from the blog post.

  • Read: Authentic and Standards-based Assessment (Shrum & Glisan, 4th Edition, pp. 410-422)
    • You only need to read what is underlined on the 12 pages
    • Be sure to look at items that have stars by them
    • If a page has no underlining, you can skip it

  • Review this PowerPoint by Paul Sandrock
    • You only need to look at the following slides:
    • p. 10 - Quote on 21st Century Skills that Supports using IPAs
    • p. 15 - Examples of different guiding questions for a unit on travel, with sample interpretive, presentational, and interpersonal tasks for each one
    • p. 18 - Purposes of Assessment in FL
    • p. 19 - Assessment Definitions (this will be on the final)
    • p. 27 - Interpretive communication is not/is...
    • p. 28 - Characteristics of Interpretive Communication
    • p. 23 - How does thinking about what you do with these texts in the real world give you ideas for tasks students could do?
    • pp. 31-35 - Assessing Interpretive Communication (Examples)
    • p. 36-37 - Strategies for Interpretive Communication
    • p. 40 - Presentational Communication is not/is...
    • p. 41 - Characteristics of Presentational Communication
    • p. 49 - Assessing Presentational Communication
    • p. 53 - Interpersonal communication is not/is...
    • p. 54 - Characteristics of Interpersonal Communication
    • p. 60 - Assessing Interpersonal Communication
    • p. 58 - Example of "TALK" Scores
    • pp. 61-64 - Sample Assessment Tools for Interpersonal Communication
    • p. 65 - Adapting Existing Classroom Activities So They Require "Negotiation of Meaning"

  • Explore this handout on Integrated Performance Assessment by Paul Sandrock
    • p. 5 - Sample Interpretive Assessment
    • pp. 3, 6-7 - Sample Interpretive, Interpersonal, & Presentational Tasks
    • p. 8 - Questions for self-assessing the tasks you create for your own IPA assignment

  • Come prepared to discuss this template for assessing interpretive skills.

Bonus Resources:

What Do We Mean By Performance - See Slides 11-14 from this presentation by Meg Malone
Sample TASK-based Evaluations for Beginning Learners - See Slides 31-33, 47-50, from Meg Malone's presentation
IPA Rubrics for Different Proficiency Levels - You can adapt these for your IPA
IPA Resource Page from Ohio
Explaining Proficiency Levels to Students

Integrated Performance Assessment Diagram
Sample IPA Tasks from Toni Theisen (French)
Sample IPA Tasks from Andrea Henderson (Look at Example 2)
  • Notice multiple texts with different tasks
  • Notice the technology component of the presentational task
CAPS 3-column Rubrics (IPA Task Rubrics from FLENJ)
Principles of Creating Effective Rubrics
IPA 4-column Rubrics

8: Midterm Course Evaluations

(Soliciting Feedback) - 15 min.

Rotation Review or Carrousel

  • What is working?
  • What needs attention?
  • Concrete strategies for addressing what needs attention.
  • Do not put your name on this.
  • Bring a hard copy to class.

9: Fast Feedback on FLTEACH Projects

(Peer Assessment) - 15 minutes total - Choose whether to do this activity or Activity 7 (you won't have time for both)
(Get photocopies of checklists from Dr. Montgomery)

Part 1: (10 minutes)

1) Read each statement on the project evaluation checklist.
2) Watch the slide show of the presentations.
3) Nominate the "best" project of the slide show.

4) Get into a group of 4 (with your project and your peer evaluation checklist).
5) Exchange your 4 FLTEACH projects for another group's 4 projects.
6) Mark whether your group agrees or disagrees with each statement in one of the 4 corners.
7) Write 2 group comments.
8) Repeat the process with the other 3 projects.
9) Give everything to Dr. Montgomery.

Part 2: Do this as homework to be turned in next time

1) Write your name on the top of both pages of the checklist.
2) Skim the self-evaluation checklist for 1 minute.
3) Ask any questions you have for 1 minute.
4) Evaluate yourself for 3 minutes.
5) Give the completed self-evaluation checklist to Dr. Montgomery.
6) Answer these questions in the discussion forum:

  • What did you learn about teaching and learning world languages from this project?
  • What did you learn about selecting, packaging, and presenting information from this project?
  • What did you learn about evaluation/grading from this project?

10: Formative Assessment - Awesome, creative, LOW PREP ideas for checking students' understanding

11: The Closure Process

(Closure) - 5 minutes

Do the Ticket Out

Have students explore:
  • The Closure Process.doc
  • Sample Closure Activities
  • ABC
  • Easy/Like Quadrants
  • Pairs Compare
  • Draw & Tell Journal
  • Peer Response Form
  • Donut
  • Rotation Reflection
  • Conversation Stations
  • Gimme 5

For practical information on assessment, visit:

12: Learn to Assess: More Assessment Resources


1) Read:


Montgomery, C. & Samples, D. (2016). Creating standards-based assessment & grading. The Language Educator, 11(2), 22-26.

Montgomery, C. (2014). The transformative power of performance-based assessment. The Language Educator, 9(2), 42-46, 53.

2) Explore:

Assessment Resources

Tools for Assessment

3) Analyze:

a) What does each quiz allow you to learn about the students' understanding?
b) What would the affordances and constraints of each quiz be for the teacher? The student?
c) How does each quiz encourage (or ignore) the development of students' critical thinking?

4) Create a final assessment (choose ONE option)

Option A: Unit Test
a) Create a 10-item test.
b) Assess key content from this course.
c) Choose a technological tool from this page.
d) Use the tool to create your test.
e) Be ready to take each other's tests.

Option B: Lesson Planning Rubric
a) Create a rubric for the ideal foreign language lesson plan.
b) Use these materials to help you.
c) Submit a hard copy to Dr. M.

5) Reflect on your last class period in the discussion forum:
  • What did you learn about teaching and learning world languages from examining student work and creating rubrics for bread making?
  • What did you learn about selecting, packaging, and presenting information from today's class?
  • What did you learn about evaluation/grading from today's class?

6) Create an Integrated Performance Assessment Assignment
a) Write an objective for a Spanish 1 class.
b) Create an integrated performance assessment project that will provide evidence that students mastered the objective.
c) Write clear instructions for the project (5 steps, 7-10 words, each step numbered).
d) Create performance assessment tasks and scaffolding materials.
e) Create task-specific rubrics to evaluate the project. (IPA Rubrics for Different Proficiency Levels - You can adapt these for your IPA)
(Bring a hard copy of instructions, performance tasks, scaffolding materials, and rubric to class.)



Campbell, Christine, & Duncan, Greg. (2007). From theory to practice: General trends in foreign language teaching methodology and their influence on language assessment.Language and Linguistics Compass, 1(6), 592-611. Retrieved May 20, 2008, from

FionaB. (2009, November 15). Grading 2.0: Evaluation in the digital age. HASTAC (Humanities, Arts, Science, & Technology Collaboratory). Retrieved September 29, 2010, from

Hall, Elizabeth Wikfors, & Salmon, Susan J. (2003). Chocolate chip cookies and rubrics: Helping students understand rubrics in inclusive settings. Teaching Exceptional Children, 8-11.

Public Schools of North Carolina. (2001). Oral language assessment in the foreign language class: Planning, conducting, and managing the possible dream
KeystoAssessment_Cover.jpg- Sandrock, Paul. (2010). The keys to assessing language performance: A teacher's manual for measuring student progress. Alexandria, VA: The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages. ISBN 978-0-9705798-3-6.

Taylor, James, & Luckau, Paul F. (1996/1986). Chapter 12 - Testing and evaluation. Fundamentals of language teaching: What every Spanish teacher needs to know. Brigham Young University.

Troyan, Francis J. (2008, August). Being authentic: Assessing standards-based tasks in a content-based curriculum. The Language Educator, 3(4), 52-54. (Rubrics used in Troyan's classes)

Van Hof, Jill. Things I learned today: Using a journal for closure. ASCD Express, 6(8). Retrieved January 30, 2011, from


Tools for Assessment