NYC Dept. of Education & Arts Connection

The New York City Department of Education and Arts Connection have partnered on “Arts Assessment for Learning” — an initiative focusing on a change in K-12 education driven by the use of formative assessment in the arts. The goal: to dispel myths that assessment is not relevant to art education, and to share the experience and results of actual NYC teachers who have successfully used formative assessment with other art educators. Level Design Group was asked to develop a strategy for the project, facilitate resource organization, and to design and develop an identity and website that aggregates those resources – a destination that will continue to collect and share the results of learning communities with over 3000 art educators in NYC, and countless more nationwide.

The result: a comprehensive online resource for formative assessment practices in arts disciplines – the first of it’s kind – providing access to over 500 resources and tools (to date) successfully used in the classroom to art educators nationally.

The strategy of the site architecture and design focuses primarily on speaking to art educators directly – many working artists themselves – and expressing how in many ways, formative assessment mirrors integral aspects of their own process as artists. 


Arts Assessment for Learning IDENTITY

brand positioning, strategy, concept, design

A simple logotype was developed to represent the organization and to unify related materials. The logo is used to brand teaching templates (such as rubrics and action plans), as well as to function as the main visual mark on the website that is the platform for the initiative.


A limited color palette was chosen so that it does not compete with the student art work that will be part of the teacher documentation.


Arts Assessment for Learning website 

visit site:
strategy, information and database architecture, content, design, front-end development

The Arts Assessment for Learning Website has won awards from the 46th Creativity Media & Interactive Awards, and a 2016 American Web Design Award inspires and supports a critical change in classroom culture, striking a balance between assessment of and assessment for learning – effectively showing not only the direct relevance of assessment to arts education, but also the parallel nature of formative assessment and the creative process itself (setting goals, assessing work, and making modifications in response to critique). 

We identified two primary audiences for the site: an art educator who may be new to formative assessment, as well as an educator who is more experienced, and is looking for specific resources and tools. With these audiences in mind, we developed a site architecture allowing both audience's the ability to experience the same material, tailored to their specific needs.

For the educator new to formative assessment, the site introduces formative assessment practices through featured projects (complete with a slideshow, interview, and resources), before leveraging all projects and tools associated with their discipline. For the educator who already uses formative assessment in their classroom, or returning users, the site affords direct access to filterable projects and/or tools – providing quick access to the resources they need. All audiences (educators, administrators, parents, etc.), benefit from thorough information on the site about assessment practices (both formative and summative), with emphasis on learning communities – their value, and how to create one.