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On-going assessment of learning in inclusive settings - Switzerland

The assessment procedure in special needs education in Swiss inclusive classrooms is similar to the assessment practice in regular classrooms.

On one hand, achievement is evaluated and appraised by school-performance tests and other tools to provide the basis for re-allocation within the regular education system as well as for decisions between schooling in inclusive settings and the exclusion of a pupil in order to be re-assigned to a special needs education programme.

On the other hand, diagnostic information is used for individual education planning. This second aspect is more important in inclusive than in regular classrooms. The instruction is more individualised and adapted to the needs of a particular pupil. Thus more accurate diagnostic information is needed to adjust the instruction strategies, objectives and materials.

Assessment and Individual Educational Plans (IEP)

Diverse methods of assessment are employed in practice. The following are considered the most critical by both, class and SEN-teachers :

  • Observation
  • Tests
  • Non-standardised tests, developed by teachers
  • Interviews with pupils
  • Consideration/Analysis of pupil’s documents
  • Individual work with single pupils
  • Learning controls 

Individual Educational Plans (IEP) are not developed in every case. Occasionally, the SEN-teacher works with pupils without an explicit individual educational plan. In such a situation, the remedial teaching is based chiefly on the concepts and methods preferred by the SEN-teacher.

Often, individual educational plans are created by the SEN-teacher alone and based on information provided by the class teacher, the parents or his/her assessment.

In other cases, an individual educational plan is created by a team including the class teacher, the SEN-teacher, and other members of the school team. This in turn is supervised by the school principal or a member of the school board. These individual educational plans produced by a professional team are evaluated on a regular basis. They are well adapted to the progress of the pupil and to changes in circumstances.



  • Luder, R.; Niedermann, A.; Buholzer, A. (in publication). Förderdiagnostisches Arbeiten in Theorie und Praxis. Ergebnisse einer qualitativ-empirischen Studie. In: Vierteljahresschrift für Heilpädagogik und ihre Nachbargebiete.
  • Niedermann, A. (2001). Heilpädagogische Unterrichtsgestaltung. Bern: Haupt.
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