#53ideas 27 – Making feedback work involves more than giving feedback – Part 1 the assessment context


As student numbers increase there are some economies of scale to be achieved in teaching methods (even if this only involves larger lecture classes) but assessment costs increase pretty much in proportion to the number of students. A consequence is that at some point assessment costs (in terms of teacher time) overtake teaching costs. I have come across contexts where the assessment costs very much more than the teaching. But much of this lavish investment in assessment, largely spent on teachers writing feedback, is wasted because students don’t read the feedback, or make very little use of it. National Student Survey scores on feedback are usually amongst the lowest for any aspect of students’ higher education experience, despite all the investment.

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