Mind the Gap: An analysis of how quality assurance processes influence programme assessment patterns

Jessop, T., McNab, N. and Gubby, L. (2012) Mind the Gap: An analysis of how quality assurance processes influence programme assessment patterns. Active Learning in Higher Education, 13 (2). pp. 143-154. ISSN 1469-7874.

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Abstract

This article explores the relationship between the lack of visible attention to formative assessment in degree specifications and its marginalization in practice. Degree specification documents form part of the quality apparatus emphasizing the accountability and certification duties of assessment. Ironically, a framework designed to assure quality may work to the exclusion of a pedagogic duty to students. This study draws on interview and documentary evidence from 14 programmes at a single UK university, supported by data from a national research project. The authors found that institutional quality frameworks focused programme leaders’ attention on summative assessment, usually atomized to the modular unit. The invisibility of informative assessment in documentation reinforced the tendency of modular programmes to have high summative demands, with optional, fragmented and infrequent informative assessment. Heavy workloads, modularity and pedagogic uncertainties compounded the problem. The article concludes with reflections about facilitating a more pervasive culture of formative assessment to improve student learning.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GV Recreation Leisure > GV0706.5 Sports sociology
L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher Education
Divisions: pre Nov-2014 > Faculty of Social and Applied Sciences > Sport Science, Tourism and Leisure
Depositing User: Ms Laura Gubby
Date Deposited: 18 Dec 2014 11:54
Last Modified: 18 Dec 2014 11:54
URI: https://create.canterbury.ac.uk/id/eprint/12893

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Last edited: 29/06/2016 12:23:00