Assessment activities are a core component of any course experience, as they represent opportunities for an instructor to gather information and make determination about what students have learned. Assessment can take many forms, from the traditional quizzes and exams, to papers and projects, to in-class activities. Ideally any assessment activity you employ in your course should match clearly to a stated learning objective and serve to evaluate students’ progress toward a desired learning outcome. Assessment is often thought of interchangeably with grading, and although grading can be part of assessment, assessment can include a range of non-graded activities that inform both student and instructor about student learning.

Assessment activities are often grouped into different categories depending on their goal. In planning assessments for a course you might consider the role of formative assessment, summative assessments, diagnostic assessments, and self assessments.