For the last few years, a very large number of the University of Edinburgh courses have moved their assessment from paper-based to online. As a centrally-based eLearning Advisor, I have been directly involved in helping with the move. During this session I will be discussing the challenges of this project whilst reflecting on the bigger picture surrounding the suitability of various online tools in relation to supporting the complexities of our assessment workflows.
From short essays marked by a single marker to dissertations which require double-blind marking – the choices and motivations for specific marking tools are driven by many interconnected factors. The University’s assessment regulations are one of them. However, there is also a less formal set of local approaches, traditions and preferences which might influence the overall perception of the experience of tools on offer with the view to support online marking and feedback provision. Whilst supporting this assessment transition using the centrally available service catalogue, one has to develop a deeper understanding of how these new online assessment workflow realities affect the three main user personas (students, admins and markers) both in the short and the long term.
Moreover, each of the developed online assessment workflows has to harmonise with the ongoing VLE provision (LEARN/Turnitin). Naturally, many of the simpler assessment exercises can be facilitated through there. However, the dissertation marking workflow requirements (i.e. double-blind) call for tools with more advanced assessment management functionality (PebblePad/ATLAS in this case). There is a set of approaches to how the relevance and benefits of introducing such additional rich environments into the users’ online journey should be presented to each of the audiences involved.
The session will cover the experiences from each of the stages of the project whilst exploring the choices and motivations highlighted above in more detail, including a range of specific examples of the more complex arrangements for multiple marking of dissertations (developed within the ATLAS tool). The presentation will also feature a collection of the ‘lessons learnt’ and other reflections which are inevitable when supporting such substantial change in practice. I imagine, the session could be particularly relevant to colleagues from other institutions who are currently exploring tried and tested ways of managing assessment of dissertations online.
N/A as this is a practice-based presentation
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