Challenging received wisdom

Our case study ‘Designing interactive assessments to promote independent learning’ from the JISC guide Effective Assessment in a Digital Age featured at the JISC Birmingham Assessment Workshop ‘From challenge to change’ yesterday, so I was speaking at the workshop.  These workshops are thoughtful and thought-provoking and there are some wonderful resources at

However, whenever I start thinking too deeply I end up worrying that we are not ‘getting it right’. That goes for my own work as much as anyone elses (see next post) but I do wonder whether all the noise being made in the ‘well tramped’ field of assessment is really making things better. In particular, we have principles of good assessment design, conditions under which assessment supports learning, guides to good assessment for learning etc. from every expert you can think of. I quote them regularly! But are these lists of sound underpinning principles really enabling us to deliver assessment that is more useful to our students and ourselves? I know that there is some inspirational work going on and that there have been some improvements over the years, but can we link improvement in learning to the underpinning principles? Where’s the evidence? If you have some, please do add a comment.

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2 Responses to Challenging received wisdom

  1. Sally Jordan says:

    Nice one Silvester, thanks – and there is some interesting discussion there too!

    best wishes


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