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postgraduate thesis: Exploring classroom-based assessment activities and learner roles in two tertiary institutions in Guangdong, China

TitleExploring classroom-based assessment activities and learner roles in two tertiary institutions in Guangdong, China
Authors
Issue Date2014
PublisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)
Citation
Jiang, Y. [蒋燕]. (2014). Exploring classroom-based assessment activities and learner roles in two tertiary institutions in Guangdong, China. (Thesis). University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR. Retrieved from http://dx.doi.org/10.5353/th_b5387971
AbstractClassroom assessment can be a powerful means of enhancing student learning, but there has been insufficient examination of how this potential can be realized, especially in the Chinese educational context. The student role in assessment is repeatedly emphasized in articles about learning and teaching, but surprisingly few studies have systematically investigated how to activate it in classroom practice. This study explores classroom-based assessment activities and learner roles in two tertiary institutions in mainland China. A qualitative multiple-case design was adopted, involving four teachers and thirty-one students from four classes. Data were collected primarily through classroom observation and semi-structured interviews. Quantitative analysis was conducted to identify major patterns in assessment practices. Qualitative analysis was also conducted in order to reveal the participants’ perceptions. The findings showed that a variety of assessment activities, from formal tests to informal teacher observation, were implemented in the four classes to varying extents. Teacher questioning and peer assessment were two prominent methods used. The learner role in teacher questioning was reported at three stages of the questioning process. At the initiation stage, convergent questions dominated and learners were placed in a passive position of knowledge reception. At the response stage, choral and individual answers were most common; the former possibly disguising learner difficulties and the latter acknowledging the student role through encouragement of independent thinking. At the evaluation stage, meaningful interventions were rarely composed to activate the learner role and move learning forward. The learner role in peer assessment was found to be associated with the participants’ conceptions of this practice. The adherents viewed learners as active participants playing the central role in assessment; those supporting peer assessment but with reservations regarded learners as immature assessors capable of providing valuable comments but in need of teacher support; the opponents saw students as incompetent assessors and considered teachers to be the leaders in assessment. Various factors were found to have interacted to shape the learner role in classroom-based assessment activities. These included teacher and student factors at the individual level, such as teacher beliefs and student academic competence; contextual factors at the classroom and institutional level, such as institutional culture; and contextual factors at the wider socio-cultural level, such as Confucian-influenced thinking. The study enriches our knowledge about classroom-based assessment in the Chinese context and offers critical insights into the student role in this process. It contributes to the understanding of the role of teacher questioning in classroom interaction, as well as factors influencing the learner role in classroom-based assessment. Further, the study offers insights into peer assessment implementation in ordinary English courses and has implications for effective implementation of peer assessment in the Chinese context.
DegreeDoctor of Philosophy
SubjectEducational tests and measurements - China
Dept/ProgramEducation
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/208617

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.authorJiang, Yan-
dc.contributor.author蒋燕-
dc.date.accessioned2015-03-13T01:44:09Z-
dc.date.available2015-03-13T01:44:09Z-
dc.date.issued2014-
dc.identifier.citationJiang, Y. [蒋燕]. (2014). Exploring classroom-based assessment activities and learner roles in two tertiary institutions in Guangdong, China. (Thesis). University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR. Retrieved from http://dx.doi.org/10.5353/th_b5387971-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/208617-
dc.description.abstractClassroom assessment can be a powerful means of enhancing student learning, but there has been insufficient examination of how this potential can be realized, especially in the Chinese educational context. The student role in assessment is repeatedly emphasized in articles about learning and teaching, but surprisingly few studies have systematically investigated how to activate it in classroom practice. This study explores classroom-based assessment activities and learner roles in two tertiary institutions in mainland China. A qualitative multiple-case design was adopted, involving four teachers and thirty-one students from four classes. Data were collected primarily through classroom observation and semi-structured interviews. Quantitative analysis was conducted to identify major patterns in assessment practices. Qualitative analysis was also conducted in order to reveal the participants’ perceptions. The findings showed that a variety of assessment activities, from formal tests to informal teacher observation, were implemented in the four classes to varying extents. Teacher questioning and peer assessment were two prominent methods used. The learner role in teacher questioning was reported at three stages of the questioning process. At the initiation stage, convergent questions dominated and learners were placed in a passive position of knowledge reception. At the response stage, choral and individual answers were most common; the former possibly disguising learner difficulties and the latter acknowledging the student role through encouragement of independent thinking. At the evaluation stage, meaningful interventions were rarely composed to activate the learner role and move learning forward. The learner role in peer assessment was found to be associated with the participants’ conceptions of this practice. The adherents viewed learners as active participants playing the central role in assessment; those supporting peer assessment but with reservations regarded learners as immature assessors capable of providing valuable comments but in need of teacher support; the opponents saw students as incompetent assessors and considered teachers to be the leaders in assessment. Various factors were found to have interacted to shape the learner role in classroom-based assessment activities. These included teacher and student factors at the individual level, such as teacher beliefs and student academic competence; contextual factors at the classroom and institutional level, such as institutional culture; and contextual factors at the wider socio-cultural level, such as Confucian-influenced thinking. The study enriches our knowledge about classroom-based assessment in the Chinese context and offers critical insights into the student role in this process. It contributes to the understanding of the role of teacher questioning in classroom interaction, as well as factors influencing the learner role in classroom-based assessment. Further, the study offers insights into peer assessment implementation in ordinary English courses and has implications for effective implementation of peer assessment in the Chinese context.-
dc.languageeng-
dc.publisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)-
dc.relation.ispartofHKU Theses Online (HKUTO)-
dc.rightsThe author retains all proprietary rights, (such as patent rights) and the right to use in future works.-
dc.rightsCreative Commons: Attribution 3.0 Hong Kong License-
dc.subject.lcshEducational tests and measurements - China-
dc.titleExploring classroom-based assessment activities and learner roles in two tertiary institutions in Guangdong, China-
dc.typePG_Thesis-
dc.identifier.hkulb5387971-
dc.description.thesisnameDoctor of Philosophy-
dc.description.thesislevelDoctoral-
dc.description.thesisdisciplineEducation-
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_version-
dc.identifier.doi10.5353/th_b5387971-

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