Assessment SIG meeting, 22 February 2007

I’ve finally managed to get the notes and reports from our most recent assessment SIG meeting at the University of Southampton up on the wiki

It was a hugely enjoyable meeting which brought together people with a wide range of interests in the CAA area.  JISC activities were well represented, with three new one year Capital Programme projects presenting a brief introduction to their work: AQuRate, for assessment authoring, Minibix for item banking and AsDel for assessment delivery.

Other JISC-funded work presented included the FREMA semantic wiki which includes a huge amount of information on the eassessment domain, PeerPigeon for services to support peer review (and which would have won had there been a prize for best project logo), MCQFM which is developing a web-based question generator, and XMarks, which is working on web services for exchanging assessment-related information including the development of an XML information model for handling this data.

Gillian Palmer of ElementE looked at some of the issues around assessment delivery in the wider European context, including the difficulty of getting different nations to adopt or support standards which are identified with particular nations, while our own Clive Church (who we share with Edexcel) looked at the challenges facing accreditation and assessment bodies in England, Wales and Northern Ireland with the introduction of the 14-19 specialised diploma. In both contexts, the use of agreed standards is crucial to the success of the assessment and accreditation process.

The importance of standards and differences between implementations were explored by Dick Bacon of the University of Surrey, who looked at some of the issues he encountered when developing a physical sciences question bank using content generated in a range of assessment tools.

Overall, it was a lively and stimulating day, and very encouraging to see how much activity and enthusiasm there is in the field.  Many thanks to all who took part, and to our hosts at Southampton for an excellent day.