Alternative assessments can create new challenges...

Art students uploading a video to a computerThere are sometimes good reasons for you to consider broadening the range of assessment methods you use, however, it's worth pointing out that using alternative methods is not without its challenges:

  • Changing the method of assessment to combat plagiarism, for example by incorporating elements of group work into an assignment, may introduce a new set of problems, such as making collusion between students a lot easier;
  • Marking new types of assignments introduces new challenges for staff, for example in terms of marking confidence and consistency (for example, assessing students self-reflective work);
  • Students (and your colleagues) may be fiercely resistant to change - although they may not necessarily like the current assessment methods, they are at least familiar to them.
  • Your colleagues may view alternative methods of assessment as being less academically rigorous than others.

Before making any changes to the ways in which you assess your students it may be worth taking a few minutes to complete the Assessment Audit Tool (PDF 190KB) [links to external site] from the UK Centre for Bioscience to identify more precisely where change could benefit your students (and you).

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