Designing curriculum and assessment to promote
effective learning in chemistry in higher education
The role of assessment in accordance with constructive alignment
is to achieve the learning outcomes to the best of one’s ability.
3 gives just some examples of assessment strategies. These do
not include group projects, PBL, and all the other assessment activities
used to assess a diverse range of learner types and skills bases.
Module descriptors require the assessment weighting and methods
to be outlined by the module authors. The competencies envisaged
in the learning outcomes should be assessed in the appropriate manner.
Clear assessment criteria should be at hand for students to refer
to and it should be evident from the assessment criteria ‘What
they need to know’!
Coppola et al. (1997) have
restructured their classroom practice and have devised five principles
which guide their instructional design to help students develop
higher order learning skills. The five principles they have outline
- to give out explicit rules/criteria;
- use Socratic instruction;
- create alternative metaphors for learning;
- use authentic problems to elicit authentic skills;
- make examinations reflect your goals (constructive alignment).
Formative assessment in student learning is usually acknowledged,
but it is not well understood across higher education. It is argued
that there is a need to take account of the epistemology, theories
of intellectual and moral development, students stages of intellectual
development, and the psychology of giving and receiving feedback.
It is noted that formative assessment may be either constructive
or inhibitory towards learning (Yorke
Assessment should be given serious consideration and reflection
and the choice of assessment methods should clearly relate to
the learning outcomes. There will rarely be one method of assessment
which satisfies all learning outcomes for a module and we would
recommend that in devising your assessment strategy, a variety
of methods is included.
(Donnelly and Fitmaurice