Types of Assessment Essay

3269 WordsJul 30, 201414 Pages
It is important to clarify some of the fundamental principles and issues which need to be applied to the design of any assessment strategies for any module or programme. For this purpose, let us define assessment as evaluation or appraisal; it is about making a judgment, identifying the strengths and weaknesses, the good and the bad, and the right and the wrong in some cases. It is more than simply giving marks or grades, although that may well be a part of it. And because it involves making a judgment it will almost always inevitably include an element of subjectivity by the assessor. However, we should strive to make assessment as objective, fair and transparent as possible. Assessment plays a crucial role in the education process: it determines much of the work students undertake (possibly all in the case of the most strategic student), affects their approach to learning and, it can be argued, is an indication of which aspects of the course are valued most highly. Purposes of assessment It is easy to become so immersed in the job of teaching that we lose sight of the exact purpose of a particular element of assessment. There is then the possibility that we are not achieving that purpose, or that we overlook another form of assessment which might be more appropriate. We actually assess students for quite a range of different reasons - motivation, creating learning opportunities, to give feedback (to both students and staff), to grade, and as a quality assurance mechanism (both for internal and external systems). Because all too often we do not disentangle these functions of assessment, without having really thought it through assessments are frequently trying to do all these things, to varying degrees. In fact it is arguable that while it is desirable for assessments meeting the first three of these functions to be conducted as often as possible, the final

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