The Scottish e-Assessment Awards, launched in 2009, recognise excellence and innovation in using e-Assessment to improve the educational experience of learners. The winners in 2013 were announced at last year’s conference.
For the Awards last year, rather than employing the services of a panel of judges to select winning entries, we trusted to the wisdom of the crowd to vote for the best examples of e-Assessment.
The process started with an open call for nominations in three categories: Product, Process and Individual/Team* – and for the week of the conference, anyone attending one of the three eAssessment Scotland events was eligible to vote.
* The Awards were open to indviduals/teams based in Scotland, and products/processes developed in Scotland, or being used within Scottish settings.
A description of each category can be found below:
Examples could include (but are not limited to): an e-Assessment authoring package, an e-Portfolio system, or a tool to deliver video feedback on assignments.
When you describe your nomination, please tell us why you think this product is a winner. How does it make a positive difference to the delivery of e-assessment?
Examples could include (but are not limited to): a process of continuous feedback between tutor and learners, the practice of designing authentic assessment tasks via a collaborative framework, or a way to schedule a programme of assessment across multiple courses.
When you describe your nomination, please tell us why you think this process is a winner. How has it made (could it make) a positive difference to the experience of e-assessment for learners and/or for teachers?
When you describe your nomination, please tell us why this person/team is a winner. How have they made a positive impact in the world of e-assessment?
Below were the winning entries for the Scottish e-Assessment Awards:
UWS eLearning Team – Innovation and collaboration in assessment
The recently formed eLearning Team at the University of West of Scotland, led by Bill Steele, has made a huge contribution to supporting innovation in e-learning and assessment both within the institution and across the wider Scottish education sector. The team has led on a range of new initiatives including an evaluation of the Rogo assessment platform and have shared their experiences openly with colleagues at other institutions in a spirit of collegiality which has raised the profile of UWS and embodies the type of collaborative approach recommended in the recent Von Prondzynski report into Scottish Higher Education.
Angus College – Fair Assessment at a Distance
I commend Angus College under the ‘Process’ category for their excellent work to support distance learners. Not all students are able to attend the main campus site in Arbroath but are situated more remotely within the wider geographical area. The college needed to find a way to duplicate the support and assessment opportunities that were available to the campus-based students. I admire the way that the college knew where it wanted to go on this problem, but was prepared to experiment with the means of achieving it. At the end of their journey the college arrived on using Adobe Connect to monitor required student interactions, even though the path to that outcome was not straightforward. By so-doing, the college has solved its distance assessment problem in an informed and iterative way, showing a willingness to be flexible and learn from mistakes. This has led, finally, to a situation where off-campus students can be confident that their assessment chances are equal to those available to their on-campus peers.
U101, The Open University’s entry Level design course, required the creation of innovative assessment software and processes to allow students to learn to design in a distance-learning environment. The software, CompendiumDS, is a ‘digital whiteboard’, in which ‘nodes’ can be arranged spatially, similar to a mind-map. Nodes can consist of a variety of media and these can be connected to allow complex patterns to be represented. Students use this to communicate the process they undertake and it is this that is assessed – not the final output itself. The entire assessment process is designed to fit into existing institutional systems.
This mode and method of assessment is unique in design education – we assess process, not product, at a distance, and promoting the idea that design is better learned, not taught.
For a full description of the software and how it’s being used at the OU, download a summary of CompendiumDS here.