Higher Education Students’ Perceptions of Effective Assessment

By Julia Wren, Heather Sparrow, Maria Northcote and Sue Sharp.

Published by The Learner Collection

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

This paper shares the voices of two cohorts of pre-service teachers responding to the assessment practices they have encountered in their pre-service teacher education course. It describes an action research project undertaken by a collaborative teaching team to explore a discrepancy revealed in a formal evaluation survey, between quite high levels of overall student satisfaction and lower levels of satisfaction with assessment practices. The paper shares insights into the students’ experience, understanding and judgment about assessment gained through self-directed student focus groups, written feedback and online discussions that help to articulate and explain students’ perspectives. The research seeks to contribute to improved understandings of students’ perceptions of assessment, in a way that supports decision-making about change that improves the experience, effectiveness and satisfaction with assessment processes for all stakeholders. This paper outlines an interesting practice-based model for collecting open and honest student evaluation of assessment and also raises some of the dilemmas faced by a team of reflective practitioners in responding effectively to students’ perspectives on assessment practices.

Keywords: Assessment, Students’ Beliefs about Assessments, Dilemmas in Assessments, Students’ Perceptions about Assessment

The International Journal of Learning, Volume 15, Issue 12, pp.11-24. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 629.084KB).

Julia Wren

Lecturer, Faculty of Education and the Arts, School of Education, Edith Cowan University, Joondalup, Western Australia, Australia

Julia Wren is a lecturer at Edith Cowan University in Visual Arts Education. Her experience in teaching is broad and spans across early childhood and primary. She has worked as an education consultant and specialist art teacher. Her current areas of research interests are in art criticism and creativity.

Heather Sparrow

Senior Lecturer, School of Education, Edith Cowan University, Joondalup, Western Australia, Australia

Heather Sparrow is a Senior Lecturer in Teaching and Learning at Edith Cowan University. Her career has included work as an early years and primary school teacher, teacher educator, instructional designer, and academic developer. She currently coordinates a Graduate Certificate in Tertiary Teaching and is engaged in several research and development projects to improve teaching and learning in higher education.

Maria Northcote

Senior Lecturer, School of Education, Edith Cowan University, Joondalup, Western Australia, Australia

Maria Northcote has worked in diverse educational roles that include primary teaching, distance education, and instructional design. She is currently a senior lecturer involved in teaching, learning and researching at the School of Education, Edith Cowan University. Her professional interests include teacher education, teacher and student beliefs, assessment and the use of computer technology in teaching and learning.

Sue Sharp

Lecturer, School of Education, Edith Cowan University, Joondalup, Western Australia, Australia

Sue Sharp lectures in Education Studies and Physical and Health Education at Edith Cowan University. Sue is an experienced teacher and teacher educator and has been involved in education for over twenty five years. Currently Sue is researching the development of collaborative partnerships.

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