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From Challenge to Change (Workshop 0068)

10:30 - 11:30 on Thursday, 8 September 2011 in 8.90
0068 From Challenge to Change: Effective Assessment in a Digital Age Sarah Knight, Mark Russell, Ros Smith, Sarah Davies
0068 From Challenge to Change: Effective Assessment in a Digital Age Sarah Knight, Mark Russell, Ros Smith, Sarah Davies

Assessment lies at the heart of the learning experience: how learners are assessed shapes their understanding of the curriculum and determines their ability to progress. At the same time, assessment and feedback form a significant part of practitioners’ workloads and, with increased numbers, reduced budgets and higher learner expectations, continue to be a matter of concern for many institutions delivering higher education.

Technology has a role to play in many aspects of assessment practice, including feedback. However, for technology-enhanced assessment and feedback to be fully effective, designs need to be pedagogically sound, constructively aligned with intended learning outcomes (Biggs, 1999) and able to add value to the learner’s experience (NUS, 2010, JISC, 2009).

Thus a major theme of the workshop is to explore how the use of technology can be linked to principles of good practice in assessment and feedback, such as the 12 REAP principles ( or the 2010 NUS Charter on Assessment and Feedback ( The workshop will draw on the work of leading theorists on assessment for learning (for example, Nicol 2010, Gibbs and Simpson 2004) in making these connections as well as recent JISC-funded projects that have focused on technology-enhanced assessment and feedback, as described in Effective Assessment in a Digital Age (JISC, 2010).

Workshop participants will be engaged with short presentations and a series of hands-on activities that focus on moving them from their current challenges towards sustainable change that makes the most advantageous use of 21st century technologies in ways that offer disciplinary, cultural and institutional relevance.

The workshop is highly participatory and will offer delegates an opportunity to explore ways in which assessment can bring about more effective learning in their context, making use of resources associated with the Effective Assessment in a Digital Age guide and the JISC-funded Effecting sustainable change in assessment practice and experience (ESCAPE) project based at the University of Hertfordshire (

Delegates will take away the Effective Assessment in a Digital Age publication, together with a set of Challenge to Change cards. All materials from the workshop will be available for use from