As you have learned, progress monitoring is a type of formative assessment by which student learning is evaluated on a regular basis to provide useful feedback about performance to learners and teachers alike. One type of progress monitoring, general outcome measurement (GOM) offers a clear indication of whether students are making adequate progress toward their learning goals. Regardless of whether GOM data are used to track the mathematics performance of typically achieving students, struggling students, or students with disabilities, the process of collecting and interpreting GOM data to monitor progress and guide instruction consists of the six steps outlined in the table below.
Keep in Mind
Select a measure
The test should be reliable and valid.
Teachers should administer two types of mathematics probes: computation probes and concepts and applications probes.
Create a graph
A graph creates a visual representation of the data.
A graph allows a teacher and student to see the relationship between the student’s effort and performance.
Create a goal line
A goal line helps establish a visual representation of the student’s expected progress.
Administer, score, and graph
Every progress monitoring probe has specific administration and scoring guidelines that teachers should carefully follow to ensure fidelity and accuracy of measurement.
In general, scoring a computation or a concepts and applications probe is simply a matter of determining how many problems the student solved correctly.
By examining the data on the GOM graph, teachers can determine whether the student is making adequate progress.
Make data-based instructional decisions
At least six data points are needed to create a clear picture of how the student is performing.
Teachers can evaluate student performance by using the Four-Point Method. This involves examining the relationship between the four most recent data points and the goal line on the student’s graph.
The Four-Point Method can help teachers decide whether to increase the student’s goal, change their instruction, or make no changes.
A graph can facilitate meaningful conversations about student performance with a number of stakeholders, including students, parents, and other professionals.
Revisiting Initial Thoughts
Think back to your initial responses to the following questions. After working through the resources in this module, do you still agree with your Initial Thoughts? If not, what aspects of your answers would you change?
How can teachers use assessment to guide instruction?
How can teachers determine whether students are making appropriate progress?
When you are ready, proceed to the Assessment section.