Embedding Assessment Throughout the Project (Keys to PBL Series Part 5)

Embedding Assessment Throughout the Project (Keys to PBL Series Part 5)

This 2-minute video is a must see.  This video is part 5 in a 5-part miniseries. The video teaches how to embed assessments in the beginning middle and end of your teaching.  The tools in this video are real-world connection, core to learning, structured collaboration, and student driven.

How we can assess in a 21st century learning environment

Ramos, Tara


Barnes, M. (2016). SE2R can revolutionize how we assess learning.  Retrieved from


Summary: This article gives an idea of how assessment can work in a 21st century learning atmosphere.  Mark Barnes, author of the book Assessment 3.0 proposes that narrative feedback is most useful to student learning and he suggests teachers use his SE2R model for providing that feedback.  The SE2R model can be summarized as follows:

  • Summarize- the evaluator gives a short statement about what was accomplished with the work
  • Explain- the evaluator explains what learning was demonstrated and/or what was missing  
  • Redirect- when learning outcomes are not demonstrated, the evaluator redirects students to prior learning, to resources or to seek help from teachers or peers.   
  • Resubmit- Students are asked to resubmit their work after making changes.  
Evaluation: I found the SE2R model to be very helpful and I feel that it aligns very well with the type of learning experiences and environments that we are building in the INFO 250 course.  We must not let assessment fall by the wayside as we create 21st century learning experiences.  Narrative feedback and the chance to resubmit goes hand-in-hand with the growth mindset that we are trying to foment.  It views learning as continuous and makes the point of learning learning, not a letter grade.  It also allows for each student to start at their unique starting point and grow as much as possible.  Lastly the SE2R model need not be only limited to teacher use, but students could also learn to use it as a tool to evaluate their own and their peers’ work.  I highly recommend this article and this author to others in the INFO 250 course.  

Going Gradeless: Student Self-assessment in PBL

 Leslie Fox

Weyers, M. Going gradeless: Student self-assessment in PBL. (2016). Edutopia. Retreived from:
In this short article Matt Meyer explains his positive experience with going “gradeless” in his 6th grade PBL class.  Meyer’s was inspired to try this new method after reading about Mark Barnes’ ideas of using narrative feedback rather than grades to affect mastery of specific learning targets within a larger project context. Meyers describes his intention to promote learning, increase student’s ability to metacognitively assess their own work against a set of standards. He details the plan to keep parents and administration in the loop as well as using Mastery Connect for formative assessments on a weekly basis.  Results include students asking in a continuous flood of emails “what can I do better?”

While at the time of writing this article, Meyers had only been trying this method for less than a quarter but his enthusiasm at his student’s engagement in the process is definitely exciting and contagious. This article lays out a simple, but powerfully effective plan to begin getting students more engaged in learning. It also offers a breakdown of conferencing with students to find out what they believe they did well or need to do better. This system encourages deeper metacognitive thinking than doing work for a grade. While the idea of “gradeless” classes seems extreme and makes most teachers, administrators and parents extremely nervous, this article shows how incorporating self-assessment into larger units can benefit learning in the classroom.