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Indicators of Effective Assessment in Higher Education
Department of Psychology,
University of Glasgow.
The University of Melbourne offers these "Indicators of Effective Assessment
in Higher Education".
- Assessment is treated by staff and students as an integral and prominent
component of the entire teaching and learning process rather than a final
adjunct to it.
- The multiple roles of assessment are recognised. The powerful motivating
effect of assessment requirements on students is understood and assessment
tasks are designed to foster valued study habits.
- There is a faculty/departmental policy that guides individuals'
assessment practices. Subject assessment is integrated into an overall plan
for course assessment.
- There is a clear alignment between expected learning outcomes, what is
taught and learnt, and the knowledge and skills assessed there is a closed
and coherent "curriculum loop".
- Assessment tasks assess the capacity to analyse and synthesise new
information and concepts rather than simply recall information previously
- A variety of assessment methods is employed so that the limitations of
particular methods are minimised.
- Assessment tasks are designed to assess relevant generic skills as well
as subject-specific knowledge and skills.
- There is a steady progression in the complexity and demands of assessment
requirements in the later years of courses.
- There is provision for student choice in assessment tasks and weighting
at certain times.
- Student and staff workloads are considered in the scheduling and design
of assessment tasks.
- Excessive assessment is avoided. Assessment tasks are designed to sample
- Assessment tasks are weighted to balance the developmental ("formative")
and judgmental ("summative") roles of assessment. Early low-stakes, low-weight
assessment is used to provide students with feedback.
- Grades are calculated and reported on the basis of clearly articulated
learning outcomes and criteria for levels of achievement.
- Students receive explanatory and diagnostic feedback as well as grades.
- Assessment tasks are checked to ensure there are no inherent biases that
may disadvantage particular student groups.
- Plagiarism is minimised through careful task design, explicit education
and appropriate monitoring of academic honesty.
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