University of Hertfordshire (UNITED KINGDOM)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN13 Proceedings
Publication year: 2013
Pages: 4635-4644
ISBN: 978-84-616-3822-2
ISSN: 2340-1117
Conference name: 5th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 1-3 July, 2013
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Much has been published about the role of assessment in student learning and we know that assessments should be designed to support learning and recognise student effort and success. They should be fair, equitable and transparent and also measure if learning outcomes have been achieved or not and never be viewed as a means to an end.
However there is little empirical evidence to date about the time it takes to create the assessment task and the processes the academic needs to consider in producing good assessment tasks from start to finish. Yet this is a crucial aspect of the assessment process and therefore to the long term attainment of learning if feedback is to be given in a timely manner. This should be seen as intrinsic to the assessment process and considered as important as the agreeing what the assessment tasks will be.
Our ‘Assessment for Learning’ principles for good practice suggests that the amount of assessment needs considering both from the students assessment workload and from the academic workload. The aim of the assessment calculator is to enable the academic to:
• Make informed decisions for educational efficiency and effectiveness of assessment.
• Consider what the various processes of an assessment are doing.
• Identify resource variants and the implications of those variants on educational effectiveness.

The purpose of this presentation is to consider the resources utilised and the time it takes to construct assessment task by using the tool we have created-the Assessment Comparator. It has been tested across a range of subjects and generic feedback has been very positive.
The design of the tool from conception to now has taken many forms. It was considered to be important to have distinct areas of lecturer activity identified within the tool that would be acknowledged as various points in the assessment design and development. Choice of the most appropriate type of assessment in the context of student learning style and numbers do have an impact of many facets of the assessment process.
By choosing an efficient assessment, the lecturer’s time can now be diverted to other student activities such as strategic development of student learning.
It is important that this tool is utilised as a means to consider efficient and effective assessment as opposed to being a management tool.
Assessment, Efficency.