Creating effective ways to demonstrate learning

Assessment is the process of gathering and analysing of information or evidence in order to guide and make judgements about students' learning in relation to curriculum goals and/or competency standards. With a learner-centred approach to teaching, the assessment process recognises the benefits to students of making sense of, reflecting on and developing their own contributions to knowledge. Assessment should support student engagement in learning and the creation of supportive learning communities, and provide feedback through recognition of achievements against specified criteria.

The following web pages include information, approaches and strategies to support you in understanding the assessment process, how you can accommodate the diverse ways in which students can demonstrate their learning, and what you can do as a teacher to enable a successful demonstration of student learning.

The following information can assist you with implementing the above pedagogical and practical suggestions:

Considerations for quality teaching practices

Quality teaching practices includes an awareness and accommodation of your student’s ability to demonstrate learning in a meaningful and relevant way.  Do you know the answer to the following?

Assessment and learning

  • Do you provide opportunities for assessment for, of and as learning?

Principles of assessment design

  • Do your assessment tasks address the ten considerations for quality design?
  • Do provide opportunities for both formative and summative feedback on learning?
  • Do your assessment tasks comply with the Universities Higher Education Assessment Procedure?

Types of assessment

  • Are the assessment tasks in your course evidence-based best practice for demonstrating the intended learning outcomes?

Self, peer and group assessment

  • Are you assessing the process or the outcome?
  • How are you ensuring equity in marks and feedback for individuals within a group?

Quality assessment practices

  • Are your assessment tasks constructively aligned to your intended learning outcomes and learning activities?

Maintaining academic integrity

  • Do you role model academic integrity with correct in-text citations and referencing within your teaching practices?
  • How do you support student academic integrity and minimalise plagiarism within assessment tasks?

Marking criteria

  • Do your marking criteria provide clarity for both students and markers in what is expected?

Exam information

  • Have you written your exam at the beginning of the semester to ensure you are teaching to it?

Technologies to enhance assessment

  • Are you using the right technology to enhance the assessment practice for both students and teachers?

Achieving the BOLD learning and teaching practices

The BOLD Learning and Teaching Practices provide clear guidelines to support teaching practices for different delivery/study modes, opportunities for self-assessment and reflection on current teaching practices, and opportunities for collaborative discussion with peers and learning designers to enhance online teaching practices. The minimum course expectations for ensuring assessments are aligned to learning outcomes and designed to enable students to demonstrate they have met them, are outlined in Focus Area 05. View the BOLD Learning and Teaching Practices

Focus Area 05 | Student progress, assessment and feedback

5.1 Assessment clearly align with the course learning outcomes/standards

5.2 Assessment comply with Federation University Assessment Policies and Procedures

5.6 Assessments are sequenced, varied and allow learners to demonstrate learning.

5.7 Marking criteria are provided online for each assessment (eg: rubric, marking guide, criteria)

Professional development opportunities

The Centre for Academic Development (CAD) offers the following ongoing professional development opportunities to support teaching staff with better design of assessment tasks and facilitation of effective assessment practices:

  • L&T Webinars – Virtual | Quarterly. Check out the virtual webinars offered throughout the year to support assessment practices.
  • L&T Workshops – Virtual or face2face | On request. Workshops can be organised for your Institute or Discipline to address your specific assessment needs. View the Institute specific PD ‘menu’ for some examples. Contact your Director, Learning and Teaching / CAD Learning Designer to see what is, or can be, organised for delivery in your area.
  • Learning Technology Hub - Online | Just-in-time. Information on how to use a range of functions within supported learning technologies to enhance your assessment practices
  • Professional Learning Modules – Online | self-paced | certificate issued on completion. The following modules are currently available. Additional modules under development.
    • PLM201: Assessment and learning (50 min)
    • PLM202: Designing quality assessment (50 min)
    • PLM206: Importance of effective marking criteria (50 min)
    • PLM207: Creating a simple rubric (50 min)
    • PLM208: Creating a simple marking guide (50 min)
    • PLM212: Effective assessment question types (50 min)
  • Graduate Certificate in Education (Tertiary Education) – This postgraduate award course is designed to support tertiary teachers deliver quality, contemporary teaching practices in the higher education setting. Modules on assessment include the likes of: Dynamics of assessment, Students as partners and Quality assessment practices.