Visualizing chemistry teachers’ enacted assessment design practices to better understand barriers to “best practices”
Even when chemistry teachers’ beliefs about assessment design align with literature-cited best practices, barriers can prevent teachers from enacting those beliefs when developing day-to-day assessments. In this paper, the relationship between high school chemistry teachers’ self-generated “best practices” for developing formative assessments and the assessments they implement in their courses are examined. Results from a detailed evaluation of several high school chemistry formative assessments, learning goals, and learning activities reveal that assessment items are often developed to require well-articulated tasks but lack either alignment regarding representational level or employ only one representational level for nearly all assessment items. Implications for the development of a chemistry-specific method for evaluating alignment are presented as well as implications for high school chemistry assessment design.