Participatory assessment is a set of practices we use to identify, describe, and evaluate texts written in particular genres that rely on people participating in assessment activity. When we talk about participatory assessment, we include peer assessment, self assessment, and collaborative assessment.
Self assessment is the practice of using evidence from our own texts and writing practices to assess our writing work. When we practice self assessment, we might identify how our writing does and does not align with genre conventions, trace our writing activity to describe our practices and texts, and evaluate our texts or practices based on particular criteria.
Peer assessment is the practice of being an audience for peers’ artifacts, identifying how they do and do not align with genre conventions, and evaluating them based on particular criteria. When we practice peer assessment, we try to make it different from peer review that uses simplified checklists and gives corrective comments; instead, we encourage people to assess artifacts as thoughtful readers who can evaluate texts’ effectiveness and describe what they see writers doing and how they understand a text in relation to genre conventions.
Collaborative assessment is a practice we use to co-construct across institutional roles (teacher, student) to determine how to evaluate individuals’ or groups’ writing. When we practice collaborative assessment, we prioritize identifying writing and learning goals before creating tools (like co-created rubrics or criteria lists) that we can use to evaluate texts according to specific genre conventions or other criteria.
Uptake as assessment
Uptake as assessment refers to the practice of using uptake as an assessment tool, of using texts we produce to trace our writing learning and practices over time to evaluate our writing activity. When we practice uptake as assessment, we prioritize learning–and our ability to articulate specifics surrounding our learning–rather than our mastery of a particular kind of writing or text production.