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Are Teachers' Use of Formative Assessment Practices Associated with Students' Use of Self-Regulated Learning Strategies?

In dynamic classroom learning environments, students think critically, interact with one another, and manage their own learning. This better prepares them for college and careers. Formative assessment is a set of practices that enable students and teachers to track progress and adjust teaching and learning during lessons, as needed, ideally leading to more dynamic learning in classrooms. This REL West study examined survey results for more than 1,200 teachers and 24,000 students in three Arizona school districts about teachers’ use of formative assessment practices and students’ learning activities in their classrooms. The study found that students more frequently tracked their own progress than they solicited feedback, while teachers gave students feedback but less often provided occasions for students to self-assess and give feedback to one another. These less common formative assessment practices—facilitating student self-assessment and peer feedback—had stronger, positive associations with students regulating their own learning. The more frequently that teachers reported using these practices, the more self-regulated learning strategies their students reported using.