Spanish university assessment practices: examination tradition with diversity by faculty.
Abstract: Classroom assessment is crucial to understand how students approach course materials, even more in a competitive environment such as the one in higher education. Our aim was to explore the current situation of assessment in higher education to consider further institutional and training actions. Every syllabus from all public universities in Spain was entered into a database, from which 1,693 syllabi were selected completely at random for a content analysis. It was found that (1) university teachers use a greater variety and number of assessment instruments than did their counterparts of decades ago, (2) final exam score is still the highest-weighted source of information for the final grade, (3) the cluster of assessment practices show that traditional approaches are still the most prevalent ones, (4) formal peer and self-assessment practices are still extremely rare in the classroom, (5) assessment practices barely change between first- and fourth-year courses, and (6) most variations in assessment are explained by differences on faculty/academic divisions. This research has implications for European legislation, university regulation and university teacher training programmes.
Universal identifier: http://hdl.handle.net/10641/1535
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