I’m just back from my second attendance at a JISC Learning and Teaching Practice Experts Group meeting. It was excellent – it is inspiring to be surrounded by people who know such a lot about learning and teaching and, more importantly, actually care about the student experience.
Half the day was spent discussing some of the early outcomes from the new JISC Assessment and Feedback Programme. I was involved in an unsuccessful bid to this programme, but can truly say that I am happy not to have been successful (not sure what my colleagues think!). I’m just SO busy and it is nice to learn from others rather than being in the thick of it.
At today’s meeting we heard from a selection of ‘Stand B’ (Evidence and Evaluation) projects but for me the highlight was the summary from Lisa Gray ‘What are we learning about technology-enhanced assessment and feedback practices?’. What follows are some of my notes, with some thoughts from subsequent discussion. Apologies for anything I’ve misrepresented:
Educational principles are rarely enshrined in strategy/policy. [In practice I think this means that it is the summative function of assessment that finds its way into policy and paperwork.]
Devolved responsibility makes to difficult to achieve parity. [This is an interesting one – we might want individual academics to have ownership of and be happy with their assessment practice, but if they are then the student experience will vary from course to course.]
Assessment and feedback practice does not reflect the reality of working life.
Administrative staff are often left out of the dialogue.
Traditional tasks such as essays/exams still predominate.
Timeliness of feedback is an issue. [our group talked about this quite a lot. This is an issue, but perhaps we need to make bigger changes so that feedback on some very specific thing in one module is less significant than feedback that is more generic and so more relevant at a later date]
Curriculum design issues inhibit longitudinal development. [again, we need a more joined up approach]