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Alison Bone - closing the loop

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Closing the loop: linking assessment criteria to feedback/feedforward for students
Alison Bone
University of Brighton
HEA conference MMU 8 May 2012

Published in: Education, Technology
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Alison Bone - closing the loop

  1. 1. Closing the loop: linking assessmentcriteria to feedback/feedforward for students Alison Bone University of Brighton HEA conference MMU 8 May 2012
  2. 2. Starting at the beginning….• Welcome! Certain assumptions have been made• Good assessment motivates students and drives their learning• Professional bodies may impact on how and what you assess…..• ….but you still have plenty of scope to try different assessment methods to challenge and inspire your students• Feedback/feedforward is a crucial aspect of (arguably) ALL assessment
  3. 3. The rationale of assessment Learning and Teaching Assessment Activities Intended Methods Learning Designed to assess learning outcomes by Designed to meet Outcomes use of learning outcomes clear criteriaFigure 1. Aligning learning outcomes, learning and teaching activities and their assessment. Adapted from Biggs(1999) p 27
  4. 4. Assessment for learning - formative assessment• To assess knowledge and understanding use quizzes or multiple choice questions in class or online• To assess communication skills, referencing, problem solving or critical analysis set small pieces of written work.• Identify the baseline!
  5. 5. Underpinning researchA good place to start is the REAP projecthttp://www.jisc.ac.uk/media/documents/programmes/ elearningsfc/sfcbookletreap.pdf• Feedback must be specific - clear guidance on what is needed to improve and where to go for further information (which could be reading or going online or an appointment with you…)• This assumes students understand the criteria in the first place (Rust et al 2010)• Is it worth all the effort? (Price et al 2010)• Using exemplars is really effective as a way of making criteria understandable (Hendry et al 2011 and 2012)
  6. 6. How can we best help to close the loop?• Ideally students should be required to acknowledge the feedback so they can show they have understood the comments given• Tutors should be aware of earlier feedback so they can re-enforce it if necessary• Students often learn in module boxes and do not transfer feedback from one tutor to another subject
  7. 7. Peer and Group Assessment • Undergraduates need to see each other as a valuable resource and to become less reliant on their tutor as ‘the fount of all knowledge’ • Peer marking develops their understanding of assessment criteria
  8. 8. Peer and Group Assessment• Start early in the course – during induction• General exercise – non-legal to start• Main purpose of peer assessment is to ensure students understand the marking criteria• Peer assessment useful for providing formative feedback in large groups• Group assessment should not be regarded as a ‘quick fix’ just because of large numbers.• Small groups - ideally no more than six - can be allocated research, writing and/or presentation tasks• If presentations are used students can peer assess these
  9. 9. And finally….• Nobody likes change• You cannot change feedback practices on your own• Course team needs to be involved• Staff development is CRUCIAL (HEA can help)• QA aspect can work for you (is the external examiner seeing just the good stuff….?)
  10. 10. ReferencesBiggs, J. (1999) Teaching for quality learning at university Open University PressHendry, G., Bromberger, N. & Armstrong, S. (2011) Constructive guidance and feedback for learning: the usefulness of exemplars, marking sheets and different types of feedback in a first year law subject Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education Vol 36(1) 1 – 11Hendry, G., Armstrong, S. &Bromberger, N. (2012) Implementing standards-based assessment effectively: incorporating discussion of exemplars into classroom teaching Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education Vol 37(2) 149 - 161Nicol, D. (2007) Principles of good assessment and feedback: Theory and practicehttp://www.york.ac.uk/media/staffhome/learningandteaching/documents/keyfactors /Principles_of_good_assessment_and_feedback.pdfPrice, M., Handley, K., Millar, J. & O’Donovan B. (2010) Feedback: all that effort, but what is the effect? Assessment and Evaluation in Higher EducationVol 35(3) 277 – 289 Rust, C., Price, M. & O’Donovan, B. (2010) Improving Students’ Learning by Developing their Understanding of Assessment Criteria and Processes Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education Vol 28(2) 147 - 164

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