The term grading generally refers to the process of rating student progress or performance in areas of academic achievement, activities, or behaviors using a coding system or established scales of values (such as letters, symbols, numbers, or percentages). This entry explores the history of grading, common methods used for reporting grades, the purposes of grading, and alternative grading practices.

On a daily basis, teachers use both formative and summative evaluations to gather information about students’ progress in achieving learning goals. Formative assessment procedures are generally less formal and are used to guide student learning while it is still in progress. Often more formal, summative assessments help evaluate student achievement at the end of an instructional unit. Summative assessment results are commonly used to inform the ...

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