Assessment Practices using Online Tools in Undergraduate Programs

Assessment Practices using Online Tools in Undergraduate Programs

Alexandra Kootsookos (RMIT University, Australia)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-2584-4.ch029
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Abstract

This chapter provides an overview of the use of online and Web-based learning technologies as formative and summative assessment. Peer learning and assessment, provision of feedback to students, online tests and quizzes, plagiarism detection systems, and audience response systems are all examined with a view to highlighting best practice and demonstrating that online assessment must still follow sound pedagogy to be both valid and valued by instructors and students alike.
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Introduction

This chapter will demonstrate that the use of online, computer-based or web-based assessments can provide some advantages over traditional modes and methods of assessment. It will also be shown that the efficacy of online assessments still revolves around a sound understanding on the part of the instructor of learning outcomes, student needs and perspectives. As with any type of assessment, constructive alignment is also vital. Poor subject or assessment design cannot be redeemed by the use of technology and student perceptions of such tools are key to maximising student learning outcomes. The objectives of this chapter are:

  • To detail the major methods and systems of online assessment as reported in the literature;

  • To examine successful implementation strategies of each form of assessment;

  • To highlight difficulties and areas of uncertainty for each assessment types;

  • To show how some of these problems are being addressed, or where there are gaps in our understanding of online assessment;

  • To demonstrate by exemplar that a sound understanding of pedagogy is required to develop successful online assessments.

This chapter will be arranged by assessment type rather than by the chapter objectives. Each objective will be considered within the frame of the specific assessment form to provide a clearer outline of the issues associated with each type of assessment.

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Peer Learning

Peer Learning, as distinct from peer assessment, generally revolves around a constructivist perspective and requires students to interact and discuss to develop and enhance their own understanding of particular topics or concepts. The main tools used to encourage peer learning are online discussion forums and wikis.

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