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Online self and peer assessment in large, multi-campus, multi-cohort contexts
conference contributionposted on 2007-01-01, 00:00 authored by Jan FermelisJan Fermelis, Richard TuckerRichard Tucker, Stuart Palmer
The increasing use of team assignments within higher education is well documented. The driving forces behind this include desires to facilitate reflective and collaborative learning, to develop generic teamwork skills for graduate employment and to reduce the grading workloads of faculty staff. Students however consistently report dissatisfaction when the assessment of team assignments produces a common grade for all team members. Self-andpeer-assessment (SAPA) is presented as a fair, valid and reliable method of producing information about ongoing team processes. This information can provide ongoing feedback to team members and rich formative data to instructors attempting to assess the team process and students’ teamwork skills. This data can also enable individualised summative assessment in dysfunctional teams or situations of uneven team member contributions. Whilst manual SAPA protocols can work effectively for smaller classes, computer-assisted SAPA offers a solution to the problems of large classes. This paper reports on the early stages of an online SAPA tool, originally developed for small classes of architecture students, adapted for use by very large business communication classes comprising up to 1000 students in a semester. This large unit is delivered on four Australian campuses as well as off-campus and in off-shore mode, by up to fourteen instructors at any one time. The paper documents how three researchers from very different backgrounds worked to create their own research team, implement a pilot study, and adapt the online tool, whilst adhering to comparability of assessment constraints and maintaining integrity of research design.