Technologies and the assessment of higher order outcomes: A snapshot of academic practice in curriculum alignment

Margot McNeill*, Maree Gosper, John Hedberg

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

    1 Citation (Scopus)


    Alignment between the intended learning outcomes, the teaching and learning activities and the assessment tasks is one of the keys to student engagement, to involve students in a 'web of consistency' (Biggs, Teaching for quality learning at university.p 26 2007). While higher order learning such as evaluation, problem solving and creative thinking; espoused as fundamentals of university learning, appear in many graduate attribute statements, previous studies suggest that designing the curriculum to elicit and assess these higher order learning outcomes poses a challenge for academics (McNeill, Gosper and Hedberg, 2010. Emerging Web 2.0 technologies have been heralded as having potential to support this type of assessment, yet in order to take advantage of these affordances, academics need the skills to integrate them into the curriculum to support learning and assessment. This paper reports the results of a survey conducted in an Australian University to explore the types of learning outcomes academics target in their curricula and how technologies are used to assess these outcomes. The results suggest that while many academics intend higher order outcomes, they are less likely to design their teaching activities or assessment tasks accordingly. Amongst the implications of the study is the need to support unit convenors in designing their curriculum to take advantage of the potential for emerging tools to support assessment of higher order outcomes.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationTowards Learning and Instruction in Web 3.0
    Subtitle of host publicationAdvances in Cognitive and Educational Psychology
    EditorsPedro Isaias, Dirk Ifenthaler, Kinshuk Demetrios, G. Sampson, J. Michael Spector
    Place of PublicationNew York
    PublisherSpringer, Springer Nature
    Number of pages13
    ISBN (Electronic)9781461415398
    ISBN (Print)1461415381, 9781461415381
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2012


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