Assessment in the area of spelling serves the same basic functions as assessment in other areas of the curriculum. These functions include: obtaining an indication of the stage of development a particular student has reached; gaining information about what next to teach the student; and checking on the efficacy of the teaching programme. Detailed information concerning a student’s spelling skills and strategies is obtained from the following assessment procedures: observation of the student while writing; analysis of samples of written work; reference to benchmark documents and profile guides; and testing. Some children will need more frequent attention from the teacher than others, but over a period of weeks the writing and spelling of all children should have been observed. There is general agreement among experts and practitioners that the most valuable source of information concerning students’ spelling ability can be obtained from samples of their unaided writing.