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Designing tasks for assessing reasoning

When designing everyday tasks, the aim is to find learning tasks that are also useful for assessment.

For teachers, the most important function of assessment is to inform planning for further teaching. Tasks used for assessment need to help identify what stage of reasoning individuals or groups have reached.

Tasks need to target specific skills. For example, tasks could assess students' ability to demonstrate and record their reasoning. There might also be tasks where students' ability to make connections can be judged. Tasks that assess proof will most likely be for secondary students.

Levels of proof

When assessing proofs, levels will vary from basic multiple trials to more formal deductions.

Ability to demonstrate reasoning

Students can demonstrate their reasoning in a number of different ways.

Ability to predict

We assess what is valued, and this includes the ability to make predictions.

Ability to make connections

It is vital to assess the connections students use in their mathematical reasoning.