Back at the end of April, I attended a conference at Brunel University on Digital Assessment. I hadn’t been to Brunel before so it was nice to see another university campus. It was easy to get to from Reading and there was a short bus ride to the campus from the station. The conference was well organised and I was looking forward to attending as we are exploring how we can use online assessments to enhance our students’ experience, providing faster feedback and also more opportunities for formative learning throughout the modules.
What was most useful for me at the conference was being able to hear from the different perspectives of using online exams. In particular, that in Scandinavian countries the use of the term online exam refers to any online formal assessment, it doesn’t have to an exam format. The demonstrations from Wiseflow were interesting as well as hearing from others who have been doing more in the way of online assessments.
The talk from Denise Whitelock was very interesting and I would like to try and adapt what she had done for our own online forums. She had taken Bales categories of feedback and applied them to the forum posts looking to see if there had been effective interactions that supported the students. Denise works at the Open University and so has a similar environment (although on a much larger scale) She showed through colour coded feedback how students had been supported, or not by comments made on the forums. The students were grouped according to their assessment outcomes. This is something that I think would be really useful for us to see what support needs to be in place to help the posts from the tutors to be more effective.