Group Dynamic Assessment in a Secondary Spanish Classroom: Student and Teacher Perceptions

Open Access
Egan, Laura Mincemoyer
Area of Honors:
World Languages Education
Bachelor of Science
Document Type:
Thesis Supervisors:
  • Matthew Edward Poehner, Thesis Supervisor
  • Matthew Edward Poehner, Honors Advisor
  • Elizabeth A Smolcic, Faculty Reader
  • dynamic assessment
  • Spanish
  • secondary education
  • alternative assessment
  • World Languages Education
  • perceptions
  • group
Given recent trends in education such as differentiation, it is clear that each student needs support at his or her own level, especially in second language classes where language proficiencies may vary greatly. However, even experienced teachers can feel swamped with the need to assess each student and then design instruction to meet his or her level. Dynamic assessment proposes a solution to these problems. This paper gives a brief explanation of the origins, formats, and recent studies of dynamic assessment, particularly as pertaining to second language learning and group dynamic assessment conducted from an interventionist approach. The original research presented in this paper examines the perceptions of participants in a group dynamic assessment strategy as used in a secondary Spanish classroom. Participants in the study, including the student teacher, mentor teacher, and students, agreed that the strategy affected student effort and attitude when providing answers in the classroom, but they encountered problems with the amount of time necessary to use a series of eight prompts arranged from most implicit to most explicit to promote student learning. The conclusion provides suggestions for further research in the field of dynamic assessment.