Transforming Assessment in Higher Education: HEA Symposium on Technology-Enabled Assessment

The Higher Education Academy recently held a Symposium in York as part of a series on ‘Transforming Assessment in Higher Education’. BU presented a Case Study at this event on our use of Online Assignment Handling, authored by David Fevyer and Kathryn Cheshir. This case study paid particular attention to our institution-wide adoption of Turnitin for submission of assignments and for providing feedback through GradeMark. There was interest in the breakout discussion concerning how we have integrated our use of Turnitin with our IT, Library and other academic support services, our focus on consistency of experience for students, and also the processes we have established to free marking staff from technical set-up tasks so that they can concentrate more on marking and feedback.

A number of other institutions presented case studies, and it was interesting to see how they had approached online assessment. Of particularly timely note were Kingston University, who are currently changing from Blackboard to a new VLE and have taken this opportunity to drive forward with enhancements to their technology-enabled assessment practices and processes. As part of an 18-month implementation period for their new VLE – which will culminate in a ‘Big Bang’ launch to the majority of their university this September – a multi skilled team of senior academics, learning technologists, graduate assistants and existing ‘super users’ have worked to surface their existing polices into good practice guidance for designing and deploying technology-enabled assessment. This work is underpinned by the premise that technology-enabled assessment practices and processes should be consistent, coherent, transparent and accessible.

The case studies presented at the event – including BU’s – will be published this September as a resource within the HEA Case Studies Series.


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