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postgraduate thesis: Teachers' conceptions and practices of assessment and factors that influenced them in Tanzania

TitleTeachers' conceptions and practices of assessment and factors that influenced them in Tanzania
Authors
Advisors
Issue Date2017
PublisherThe University of Hong Kong (Pokfulam, Hong Kong)
Citation
Kahembe, J. J.. (2017). Teachers' conceptions and practices of assessment and factors that influenced them in Tanzania. (Thesis). University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR.
AbstractAbstract of the thesis entitled Teachers’ Conceptions and Practices of Assessment and Factors that Influenced them in Tanzania Submitted by Kahembe, Joyce Joas For the degree of Doctor of Philosophy at the University of Hong Kong November 2017 This is a study of teachers’ conceptions and practices of assessment and factors that influenced them in Tanzania. This study was significant in Tanzania following the education assessment reform made in 2005 and the challenges the government was facing in implementing it. The study was conducted in six lower secondary schools in three regions of Tanzania; Manyara, Morogoro and Dar-es Salaam. Eighteen teachers, five education leaders, four tutors and twelve students were purposively selected for this study. The study used a sociocultural perspective with an extension of complex adaptive system theory. Qualitative in design, ethnographic oriented methodologies were used in data collection. Teachers held similar conceptions of assessment; however, they had different meanings and foci. They conceived assessment for; a) assessing and monitoring students’ understanding, progress and achievement of learning; b) improving purposes; teaching, learning and performance; and c) for accountability purposes; students, teachers, school and government accountability. Conceptions of assessment for the accountability and improvement purposes were previously identified in another context. However, the findings in this study indicates the complexity and magnitude of these conceptions in Tanzania. There was an association of teachers’ conceptions and their assessment practices. Specific assessment practices and their related assessment conceptions were shown. Teachers who conceived students’ understanding as the mastering and reproduction of knowledge used less questioning and probing approaches than those who conceived assessments at a deep level of understanding. However, there were no differences in feedback use among the teachers who held different conceptions of assessment; they all used feedback to ensure the mastering of curriculum intents. Teachers’ assessment practices entailed both formative assessment and formative uses of summative test assessment, however, assessment practices could not capture assessment for learning practices. Feedback practices were not constructive to support learning. Teachers’ feedback behaviours of constructing, acknowledging, disapproving and approving students’ responses reduced students’ autonomy in knowledge construction. They instigate students’ intellectual dependence to their teachers and hinder them to learn from their peers, unless responses are confirmed. These practices can also promote memorisation of facts. It was not that teachers lacked knowledge of education assessment reform; they could explain about the education reform. They were reluctant, however, to adopt and embrace assessment reforms, as they did not perceive them to be intelligible and practicable. Teachers found the assessment reform to challenge their teaching roles and learning demands. Teachers felt obliged to improve students’ performance in the national examinations because they were more accountable for performance in the national examinations than for building learners’ competencies. Teachers also perceived difficulties implementing assessment reform due to the existing physical, economic and cultural contexts of teaching and learning. Consequently, they adopted strategies, such as holistic assessment and improving learning and performance to suit their teaching and learning environments. There is a need for considering the context and cultural realities of teaching and learning in education reforms. Improving traditional assessment practices rather than transforming them can be more appropriate for establishing sustainable assessment practices suiting the physical, political, economic and cultural environments of teaching and learning.
DegreeDoctor of Philosophy
SubjectTanzania - Educational tests and measurements
Attitudes - Teachers - Tanzania
Dept/ProgramEducation
Persistent Identifierhttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/255046

 

DC FieldValueLanguage
dc.contributor.advisorJackson, EJ-
dc.contributor.advisorJung, J-
dc.contributor.authorKahembe, Joyce Joas-
dc.date.accessioned2018-06-21T03:42:03Z-
dc.date.available2018-06-21T03:42:03Z-
dc.date.issued2017-
dc.identifier.citationKahembe, J. J.. (2017). Teachers' conceptions and practices of assessment and factors that influenced them in Tanzania. (Thesis). University of Hong Kong, Pokfulam, Hong Kong SAR.-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10722/255046-
dc.description.abstractAbstract of the thesis entitled Teachers’ Conceptions and Practices of Assessment and Factors that Influenced them in Tanzania Submitted by Kahembe, Joyce Joas For the degree of Doctor of Philosophy at the University of Hong Kong November 2017 This is a study of teachers’ conceptions and practices of assessment and factors that influenced them in Tanzania. This study was significant in Tanzania following the education assessment reform made in 2005 and the challenges the government was facing in implementing it. The study was conducted in six lower secondary schools in three regions of Tanzania; Manyara, Morogoro and Dar-es Salaam. Eighteen teachers, five education leaders, four tutors and twelve students were purposively selected for this study. The study used a sociocultural perspective with an extension of complex adaptive system theory. Qualitative in design, ethnographic oriented methodologies were used in data collection. Teachers held similar conceptions of assessment; however, they had different meanings and foci. They conceived assessment for; a) assessing and monitoring students’ understanding, progress and achievement of learning; b) improving purposes; teaching, learning and performance; and c) for accountability purposes; students, teachers, school and government accountability. Conceptions of assessment for the accountability and improvement purposes were previously identified in another context. However, the findings in this study indicates the complexity and magnitude of these conceptions in Tanzania. There was an association of teachers’ conceptions and their assessment practices. Specific assessment practices and their related assessment conceptions were shown. Teachers who conceived students’ understanding as the mastering and reproduction of knowledge used less questioning and probing approaches than those who conceived assessments at a deep level of understanding. However, there were no differences in feedback use among the teachers who held different conceptions of assessment; they all used feedback to ensure the mastering of curriculum intents. Teachers’ assessment practices entailed both formative assessment and formative uses of summative test assessment, however, assessment practices could not capture assessment for learning practices. Feedback practices were not constructive to support learning. Teachers’ feedback behaviours of constructing, acknowledging, disapproving and approving students’ responses reduced students’ autonomy in knowledge construction. They instigate students’ intellectual dependence to their teachers and hinder them to learn from their peers, unless responses are confirmed. These practices can also promote memorisation of facts. It was not that teachers lacked knowledge of education assessment reform; they could explain about the education reform. They were reluctant, however, to adopt and embrace assessment reforms, as they did not perceive them to be intelligible and practicable. Teachers found the assessment reform to challenge their teaching roles and learning demands. Teachers felt obliged to improve students’ performance in the national examinations because they were more accountable for performance in the national examinations than for building learners’ competencies. Teachers also perceived difficulties implementing assessment reform due to the existing physical, economic and cultural contexts of teaching and learning. Consequently, they adopted strategies, such as holistic assessment and improving learning and performance to suit their teaching and learning environments. There is a need for considering the context and cultural realities of teaching and learning in education reforms. Improving traditional assessment practices rather than transforming them can be more appropriate for establishing sustainable assessment practices suiting the physical, political, economic and cultural environments of teaching and learning. -
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.rightsThis work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.-
dc.subject.lcshTanzania - Educational tests and measurements-
dc.subject.lcshAttitudes - Teachers - Tanzania-
dc.titleTeachers' conceptions and practices of assessment and factors that influenced them in Tanzania-
dc.typePG_Thesis-
dc.description.thesisnameDoctor of Philosophy-
dc.description.thesislevelDoctoral-
dc.description.thesisdisciplineEducation-
dc.description.naturepublished_or_final_version-
dc.date.hkucongregation2018-
dc.identifier.mmsid991044014359303414-

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