Summative assessment is an assessment administered at the end of an instructional unit in a course. These assessments are intended to evaluate student learning by comparing performance to a standard or benchmark. They are often high-stakes, meaning they have a high point value. Examples of summative assessments include midterm exams, a final exam or a final project.
Summative assessments are given to students at the end of an instructional period. They are evaluative rather than diagnostic and are used to measure whether a course’s learning objectives were met. Unlike formative assessments, summative assessments are formal and involve clear instructions, expectations and grading rubrics to measure student comprehension.