Assessment relationships in higher education: the tension of process and practice

Crook, Charles, Gross, Harriet and Dymott, Roy (2006) Assessment relationships in higher education: the tension of process and practice. British Educational Research Journal, 32 (1). pp. 95-114. ISSN 0141-1926

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It is argued that the auditing demands of quality assurance have encouraged a greater proceduralisation of university coursework assessment. Interviews with academics from a cross-section of Psychology departments illustrated how assessment had acquired the tightly scripted character of an organisational process. Yet undergraduate focus group conversations suggested that this proceduralisation obstructed the experience students sought from assessment as a form of educational practice. It is argued that educational contexts can create a distinctive form of process/practice tension. In particular, formalising assessment into a process may conceal students' unease, inhibit the expression of that unease, and create a distracting focus on study products rather than study practices. A striking interpersonal dissociation of author and reader (student and tutor) was apparent in the organisational processes documented here. This was identified as the source of significant student discontent, and the likely starting point for its repair.

Keywords:Student testing and evaluation, teaching, learning, testing, Quality assurance
Subjects:X Education > X342 Academic studies in Higher Education
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Psychology
ID Code:13439
Deposited On:28 Feb 2014 10:59

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