Summative assessments provide more data for administrators and policymakers, while formative assessments are for teachers. These often informal check-ins help teachers understand whether students have actually understood their lessons. They help educators figure out what to review or teach a new way to achieve more widespread understanding among students. And it also helps them plan for personalized learning. If certain groups of students don’t get something but others do, teachers can group students for a targeted intervention.
Classroom clicker systems have long helped teachers assess student understanding in a quick and fun format. Clicker technology, though, has come a long way, with apps now offering a range of new functionalities. For 1:1 or BYOD districts, or even schools in which all students bring their own smartphones from home, these apps can be a big step toward meeting individual students' needs.