Major Difference between Assessment and Evaluation

What’s the difference between assessment and evaluation?

Assessment and evaluation mean almost the same thing, which makes it hard for many people to know how to use them correctly. These two terms are often used in school, and sometimes even teachers get them wrong.

The difference between assessment and evaluation is shown in the lesson as a table so that it is easy to understand. Let’s find out.

Assessment and Evaluation

What is an Assessment? 

An assessment is a methodical way to measure a person’s skills based on real-world data. When you evaluate a person, all you have to do is compare their skills and behaviors to a set of rules. This gives you a good idea of their strengths and weaknesses.

Depending on the situation, assessments can be set in stone or flexible. Formative assessments, for example, happen throughout the learning process and give feedback in real time. Summative assessments, on the other hand, compare what a person knows to what they should know in a certain situation.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Assessments

Advantages: It gives students structure and motivation to get better, and it makes sure they can deal with competition and disappointment. It helps teachers figure out how much their students know so they can teach them at the right level and pace.

Disadvantages: Assessments can change the way that teaching is done. This takes the focus away from having fun and being inspired and puts it on just passing an assessment. It also might be putting too much pressure on the students, their parents, or their teachers.

What is an Evaluation?

Traditional assessments go one step further than an evaluation. The Canadian Evaluation Society says that it is the systematic evaluation of an initiative’s design, implementation, or results in order to learn or make decisions. For example, when you evaluate a program, you look at its different results and characteristics in a critical way to figure out how well it worked.

Using a clear set of criteria, an evaluation tries to make an objective decision about the value, quality, or importance of a subject. In this way, evaluations are very important and have a big effect on the people who take part in them.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Evaluations 

Advantages: An evaluation helps you match a project’s resources and results. In this way, it’s a great way to measure returns on investments and figure out if a project is giving stakeholders the most benefit.

Disadvantages: Assessments are spontaneous and open to change, but evaluations are often rigid and made up. This can make it harder for people to do well during this process. Also, if there is a mistake in the way grades are given, it affects the quality of the data that comes out of an evaluation.

Comparison Chart: Assessment Vs Evaluation

MeaningReview information about something to make it work better than it does right presently.Means to judge the performance based on the standards that are already in place.
OrientationProcess OrientedProduct Oriented
Measurement StandardsAbsoluteComparative
Relationship between partiesReflectivePrescriptive
GradeTend to be gradedNot graded
OutcomeConstructive feedback.Show shortcomings.
CriteriaSet by both the parties jointly.Set by the evaluator
Main functionProvides feedback on performance and areas of improvement.Determines the extent to which objectives are achieved

Key Differences Between Assessment and Evaluation

  • Assessment gets a grade, but evaluation does not.
    The results of assessment are positive, while the results of evaluation show what went wrong.
  • The focus of assessment is on the process, while the focus of evaluation is on the end result.
  • Evaluation is based on standards that have already been set, while assessment is done on an individual basis.
  • The main goal of assessment is to improve performance, while the goal of evaluation is to judge it.
  • In assessment, the relationship between two people is reflective, while in evaluation, it is from a different point of view.
  • Assessment is based on how well both parties understand each other, while evaluation is done by the evaluator.
  • Assessment uses absolute measures of standards, while evaluation uses relative measures.
  • Assessment is about finding out what is wrong, while evaluation is about making a decision.
  • Assessment is the process of looking at, analyzing, and using data to improve performance. Evaluation, on the other hand, is the process of making a decision based on standards that have already been set.


So, it’s clear from what’s been said above that assessment and evaluation are not the same thing. Evaluation is about making decisions, while assessment is about helping someone improve their performance. But they are very important for figuring out how well a person, product, project, or process is doing and making changes to it.