Performance Assessment

Performance Assessment

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Form of assessment that requires students to demonstrate their knowledge or skills by accomplishing specific tasks, such as constructing a response (e.g. solve math problems) or creating a product (e.g. woven a basket). Performance assessment is based on directly observable evidence of learning which might take the form of a portfolio, paper, speech, reading or any other well-defined action.


  • It requires learners to actively demonstrate what they know
  • It simulates real world tasks
  • It requires thinking skills
  • It mixes different learning styles together (visual, mental, auditory: VAK model)
  • It provides a more complete picture of learners’ achievement
  • It can be used for diagnostic, instructional, and monitoring purposes
  • It has multiple correct answers [1]
See also: Assessment, Formative Evaluation, Peer-to-Peer Assessment, Performance, Summative Evaluation, Test Assessment

Toolkit.png Step by Step guidelines for developing Performance Assessments
  • Clearly formulate the learning objectives for the unit/module.
  • Establish which kind of skills/ knowledge you want to assess (e.g. reasoning, memory, process).
  • Decide what learners will need to demonstrate (e.g. decision making skills, problem solving skills, communication skills) and which are going to be the outcomes of the activity.
  • Decide if the performance assessment suits the established goal and type of skills to be assessed.
  • Define the criteria that you will use to measure/evaluate the performances, and make sure that these criteria reflect the most valued elements of learners’ performance.
  • Design the task by thinking about a meaningful context for engaging learners. Take into account that it has to bridge prior knowledge and interests with essential skills and competencies.
  • Generate an exemplary response
  • Decide which kind of scoring is most appropriate for the task. Remember that providing feedback in terms of levels of competence is more important than providing just numerical scores.[2]

Job Aid

Pdf.png Step by Step guidelines for developing Performance Assessments.pdf‎

Link icon.png Web Resources
Below you have a list of selected websites where you can find additional information:
Link Content
An Introduction to Comprehensive Assessment (video,3 minutes) Performance-based evaluation is a real-world improvement on the artificial measures of paper-and-pencil testing


  1. (22 May 2009), (27 August 2009), (18 December 2009), (24 November 2011), (24 November 2011)
  2. [] (24 November 2011), [] (24 November 2011)