How informative is formative assessment? Investigating the learning process of educators who adopt formative assessment as practice

Liutkus, Darlene E. (2015) How informative is formative assessment? Investigating the learning process of educators who adopt formative assessment as practice. [Thesis (PhD/Research)]

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Abstract

Researchers of formative assessment have concluded that, when teachers practice formative assessment as a process of learning, student achievement of outcomes increases. Other researchers have explored the success rate of teachers’ professional development when they engage in a professional learning community and have concluded it offers the best results. Both have distinct yet very similar attributes that lead learners into becoming cognizant and reflective conduits for knowledge acquisition.

The purpose of this study is to determine if instructors, who learn about formative assessment practice by participating in professional learning teams, would encounter a process of learning similar to learners who engage in a formative assessment environment. The investigation into current literature uncovered characteristics that were codified to elicit evidence of their learning. Using data collection tools such as transcribed conversations, journals, observation and student focus group, themes were revealed that provide evidence of similarities.

For this study, nine instructors who worked in a Canadian college located in the Middle East met regularly in professional learning teams, for three consecutive semesters, to learn how to implement formative assessment practice in their classrooms. They endeavoured to adopt the strategies and techniques essential to creating a formative assessment environment for students who have culturally different backgrounds.

Using an ethnographic case study approach with direct content analysis, the evidence from this study has revealed that the instructors learning behaviour in the professional learning teams is analogous to learners who engage in a formative assessment learning environment. In each environment learners collaborate, reflect and evaluate their learning. The study also revealed sharing of personal and professional experiences builds an environment of trust that nurtures and empowers those who participated helping them to learn, grow and change.

It is acknowledged that the social reality of the cultural context in this study leaves replication open to varying results. Attention to the affect of student motivation on teacher learning may produce differing outcomes.


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Item Type: Thesis (PhD/Research)
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Doctor of Education thesis.
Faculty / Department / School: Current - Faculty of Business, Education, Law and Arts - School of Teacher Education and Early Childhood
Supervisors: Haeusler, Carole; Jasman, Anne
Date Deposited: 21 Dec 2015 05:39
Last Modified: 21 Dec 2015 05:39
Uncontrolled Keywords: formative assessment
Fields of Research : 13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130303 Education Assessment and Evaluation
13 Education > 1303 Specialist Studies in Education > 130309 Learning Sciences
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/28244

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