Teaching @ Sydney

November 2012

Assessment and learning standards: The big picture

The main aims of the ‘Assessment and learning standards’ session on Day 1 of the Sydney Teaching Colloquium were three-fold. They were to share colleagues’ successful approaches to developing program learning standards and assuring graduate outcomes; engaging students with assessment task standards; and using team-based learning as a foundation to develop graduate attributes for communication and teamwork.

At the session approximately 150 participants listened to three short presentations, before discussing, in round table format, the application of the issues which had been presented. Volunteers then shared their own examples and this was followed by a Q&A session.

Participants commented that that they enjoyed the sharing and interaction and also valued hearing about the big picture: the AQF and TEQSA threshold standards projects that require universities to show evidence of graduates’ achievement of program learning outcomes. Some participants found it useful to hear about the University’s approach to evidencing outcomes with the QVS project. They heard from the discipline of History of how this approach resulted in a revised curriculum and the introduction of a capstone assessment task. Other participants commented positively on the use of exemplars of student work to help unpack assessment task standards and apply the new standards-based assessment policy. The discussion around developing and assessing team skills through a whole-unit approach using team-based learning was another highlight of the session.

Faculties contributing speakers were Business, Arts and Social Sciences, and Education and Social Work.

Resources from this session of the Colloquium are available here.