The Re-Engineering Assessment Practices in Scottish Higher Education project (REAP) is one of six projects funded under the Scottish Funding Council's E-learning Transformation Programme. The project is piloting improved models of assessment across three universities - the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow Caledonian University and the University of Glasgow.

Assessment is one of the most important drivers for transformational change, determining both how and what students study. For REAP, assessment is defined broadly to include tutor, peer and self-assessment processes. It doesn't just mean marks or grades (summative), but also feedback to improve students' learning (formative). The aim of the project is to transform thinking about and practices of assessment across the Scottish HE sector, via the development of new models of assessment, supported by technology, that foster lifelong learning skills. Over the course of a degree, students should develop their ability to monitor, critically assess and correct their own work, taking an active role in managing their learning.

The educational basis of the project includes Nicol & Macfarlane-Dick's (2006) research on how formative assessment and feedback might support the development of learner self-regulation. Their seven principles of good feedback practice has informed much of the reengineering in the REAP project.

The Seven Principles of Good Feedback Practice

  1. Helps clarify what good performance is (goals, criteria, expected standards).
  2. Facilitates the development of self-assessment (reflection) in learning.
  3. Delivers high quality information to students about their learning.
  4. Encourages teacher and peer dialogue around learning.
  5. Encourages positive motivational beliefs and self-esteem .
  6. Provides opportunities to close the gap between current and desired performance.
  7. Provides information to teachers that can be used to help shape the teaching.

Glasgow University's Role

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