Date of Conferral



Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




Heather Pederson


Formative assessment is supported by research as a process to enhance student learning. A vital aspect in the process is the role of feedback which, based on its use, can support or hinder student learning. The problem addressed in this study was based on the concern of a high school administrator that teachers in the school were not using formative feedback in a manner that supported student learning. The purpose of this instrumental qualitative case study was to explore and understand the assessment and feedback practices of mathematics teachers in a private high school setting. The conceptual framework for this study was a model influenced by Black and Wiliam's theory of formative assessment and by Hattie and Timperley's model of feedback in which effective feedback is the supporting structure of the formative assessment process for promotion of student learning. The research questions were designed to explore the beliefs and practices of 3 mathematics teachers regarding the purpose of assessment and feedback. Qualitative data were collected from archival documents, observations, and a series of semistructured interviews. Data were analyzed by using multicycle descriptive coding and development of themes. Findings included teachers' beliefs, practices and misconceptions about the assessment and feedback cycle in relation to student learning in their classrooms. A recurring theme was that they lacked training in formative assessment practice. A 3-day professional development workshop that integrated and grounded formative assessment research into the daily practice of teachers was developed as a project. Teachers might bring about positive social change as their students develop self-regulatory learning strategies and transfer them into community life.