Doctoral Position

Formative assessment in the classroom supported by machine learning

Supervisors: Prof. Dr. Gunnar Friege and Prof. Dr. Eirini Ntoutsi

In meta-studies (overview in Schütze et al., 2018, e.g. Black & William, 1998) – formative assessment has proven to be a pedagogical measure with a high level of effectiveness compared to other measures (see also Hättie, 2013). Formative assessment consists of the chronological sequence of three actions (Souvignier & Hasselhorn, 2018): 1. individual assessment of learning status, 2. feedback for both learners and teachers, based on 1. and 3. support measures and learning progress diagnosis. This concept is particularly differentiated from summative assessment (see also Maier, 2010), where the final assessment (often in the form of grades) is usually the main focus at the end of a learning unit. Formative assessment comprises measures of different actors (teacher, peer, learner) and concerns learning objectives, learning status and determining the steps towards the learning objective. According to Souvignier & Hasselhorn (2018), “[t]he framework of formative assessment undoubtedly provides a highly attractive framework for the development of differentiated support approaches. Making individual learning achievements the starting point for content feedback and targeted support measures means realising an optimised match between demand and supply.” Souvignier & Hasselhorn (2018) point to the need for further research and development, despite the widely recognised learning effectiveness: “In addition, intervention studies are needed in which concrete measures for implementing the concept of formative assessment are tested in practice and scientifically evaluated.“ Formative assessment often also means that a large amount of data is generated in the form of drawings, texts, crosses, etc., which must be evaluated for the individual assessment of the learning status in order to be usable for actions based on it. In this project, the data assessment will be partly carried out by machines and thus support the teacher and the learners in the teaching-learning process.


Black, P., & Wiliam, D. (1998). Assessment and classroom learning. Assessment in Education: Principles, Policy & Practice, 5, 7–74.

Hattie, J. (2013). Lernen sichtbar Machen. (Überarbeitete deutschsprachige Ausgabe von W Beyl & K. Zierer]. Baltmannsweiler: Schneider Verlag.

Maier, U. (2010). Formative Assessment – Ein erfolgversprechendes Konzept zur Reform von Unterricht und Leistungsmessung? Zeitschrift für Erziehungswissenschaft, 13(2), 293–308. Mc

Souvignier, E. & Hasselhorn, M. (2018). Formatives Assessment. Zeitschrift für Erziehungswissenschaft, Vol. 21, 4, S. 693-696

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