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AssessIT? - Or Not?

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by Shirley Earl, Educational Development Unit, The Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen, and David Baume, Centre for Higher Education Practice, The Open University, Milton Keynes.

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In 1995 The Robert Gordon University committed itself to a review of its assessment strategy.

During the 1995/96 session it used Scottish Higher Education Funding Council (SHEFC) monies to scrutinise assessment practice and procedures. The resulting report drew together staff comment; commended practices from its Teaching Quality Assessment visits; and commended practices from Audit. Building on this, the report formed conclusions on University scales, threshold policies, systems and methods.

Through this investigation and report the University recognised the variety, vitality and dynamics of its assessment processes and publicly acknowledged that considerable flexibility needed to be retained. The University also agreed, however, that it would be preferable to clarify some University-wide expectations about assessment.

The vehicle chosen for this task was an Assessment Handbook.

The University is now compiling its Handbook which seeks to

The Handbook comes as a reference point, a source of shared scholarship and a compilation of good practice. Innovation in the use of learning technology for assessment should link to this, coming from shared need and the University's curriculum pull. Demonstrably, any IT-based assessment package or system should be consistent with the institution's culture, and capable of nesting within the University's assessment policy and guidelines as described in the Handbook.


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Last modified: 07 December 1999 (formatting),
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First published: April 1997.