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Formative Assessments

Time limit: 731 days


Full course description

Course Description

This digital course, called Formative Assessments, covers basic information about using regular, low-risk assessments throughout the semester to help create a regular feedback loop between students and instructors about topics like course material, learner attitudes, metacognition, and teaching strategies.

Course Learning Outcomes

By the end of this digital course, you will:

  • Understand the differences between formative and summative assessments
  • Understand and have examples of formative assessments that can be used to assess student understanding of course materials,  and get feedback on learner attitudes and teaching strategies
  • Have started a plan for implementing or revising formative assessments in your course(s).


  1. What Is Formative Assessment and Why Is It Important?
  2. Assess Course Material and Skills
  3. Assess Learner Attitudes and Metacognition
  4. Get Feedback on Teaching Strategies and Materials
  5. Your Action Plan


This digital course consists of five lessons, which altogether will take approximately 30-45 minutes to complete. Additional resources or tips for further exploration are provided at the end of each lesson. Each lesson culminates in a knowledge check to confirm what you have learned and move on to the next lesson.

Intended Audience

UMD faculty, staff, and graduate students


Once you have engaged with all of the pages and completed all of the assignments in this course, you will receive a certificate of completion from Open Learning. If you have questions or issues receiving your certificate of completion, please email

Keep an eye out for announcements to come soon about similar offerings from the University of Maryland's Teaching Academy. Once the Teaching Academy is live, you will be able to apply your completion of this digital course towards that non-credit certificate program!

Sign up for this course today!