About this paper

Appears in:
Pages: 2448-2458
Publication year: 2011
ISBN: 978-84-614-7423-3
ISSN: 2340-1079

Conference name: 5th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 7-9 March, 2011
Location: Valencia, Spain

A TRULY GENERIC PERFORMANCE ASSESSMENT SCORING SYSTEM (PASS)

P. Vossen

Research Institute SQUIRE (GERMANY)
Wouldn’t it be helpful, if there were a judgment, assessment and evaluation model, which could be used irrespective of the kind of learning processes and related tests? A model that is flexible enough to take any local guidelines for assessment into account? A model with a few easy-to-understand “handles”, so that you may customize it according to your own needs and preferences? And, last but not least, a model that despite all these properties is easy to apply, that is completely transparent and thus compelling, and doesn’t counteract any legal rules or institutional practices?

PASS is such a model. Basic to the model are so-called assessment profiles for an arbitrary number of context-dependent assessment criteria with no more than three assessment levels per criterion called "below average", "average" and "above average", respectively. Experience over many years has shown that these three levels are entirely sufficient to get an adequate differentiation between learning performances in a reasonable time frame: using such assessment profiles and a special counting method it is possible to get the equivalent of a 100-point scoring scale with no more than 13 assessment criteria.

This qualitative judgment results in a primary quality statement. In addition a teacher may wish to take any number and type of assessments of the same test performance into account, e.g. an estimate of the workload to produce the test result (e.g., number of hours to write an essay) and/or the size of the resulting product (e.g., number of pages, length of a presentation) and/or the adherence to formal criteria (e.g., for paper layout or presentation style) and use of soft skills (e.g., collaboration, communication). All of these metrics are aggregated by means of a formula which has provably correct behaviour, no matter how many metrics one uses. The result of the procedure is a standardized performance score.

These performance scores – one for each assignment – form the basis for formative evaluation, i.e. iterative feedback on learning progress during a particular course, as well as summative evaluation, i.e. the final outcome of a single course or sequence of courses, mostly in form of a single final grade. For the last case one has to specify assignments weights, taking whatever differentiating criteria between the assignments into account. Also one may apply overall quality factors at course level before calculating the final grade.

Once one has such an aggregated performance score, the last step of the procedure is to transform it into a grade. Here it is where country-specific or even institution-specific transformation rules have to be followed. For the time being the author has exclusively focussed on numerical grading systems, but there is no inherent difficulty of applying an alphabetical grading scheme.

The PASS Model has emerged over several years from the needs of actual teaching practice. The author has tested it in his own courses at several educational institutions. It has been favourably accepted by students, presumably because it makes the very assessment procedure transparent, traceable and accountable, because it guarantees “fair play” during assessment, because it introduces a lot of potential for systematically awarding “above average” work, and because students play an important role in the model, as they have to provide most secondary performance data.
@InProceedings{VOSSEN2011ATR,
author = {Vossen, P.},
title = {A TRULY GENERIC PERFORMANCE ASSESSMENT SCORING SYSTEM (PASS)},
series = {5th International Technology, Education and Development Conference},
booktitle = {INTED2011 Proceedings},
isbn = {978-84-614-7423-3},
issn = {2340-1079},
publisher = {IATED},
location = {Valencia, Spain},
month = {7-9 March, 2011},
year = {2011},
pages = {2448-2458}}
TY - CONF
AU - P. Vossen
TI - A TRULY GENERIC PERFORMANCE ASSESSMENT SCORING SYSTEM (PASS)
SN - 978-84-614-7423-3/2340-1079
PY - 2011
Y1 - 7-9 March, 2011
CI - Valencia, Spain
JO - 5th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
JA - INTED2011 Proceedings
SP - 2448
EP - 2458
ER -
P. Vossen (2011) A TRULY GENERIC PERFORMANCE ASSESSMENT SCORING SYSTEM (PASS), INTED2011 Proceedings, pp. 2448-2458.
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