Sharing innovative assessment design

The AJP team continues to develop a comprehensive library of online case studies for academics.  We are now developing a series of case studies to share innovative assessment practice across faculties.  We’ll be promoting the case studies to staff via our blog and Assessment Essentials on a regular basis.

The first assessment design case study we’re sharing focuses on TESTA (Transforming the Experience of Students Through Assessment) and how it has helped to redesign assessment across the Academy of Sport and Physical Activity in HWB.


Written by Eddie Mighten and Diane Burkinshaw, the case study focuses on the use of Formative Assessment (Assessment for Learning) that is a feature of everyday teaching.  It is an essential part of the learning and teaching strategy which is scheduled, designed and required in a module. It helps students learn and generates feedback which helps shape understanding.  On some of the Academy’s 3 year courses, there has been a reduction from 36 to 16 summative tasks, being replaced by ‘true’ formative assessment tasks.

Please contact us if you have any innovative assessment design practice that we could share via a case study.

Student reps have their say!

It was great to see so many student representatives at the first of a series of workshops to look at shaping a brand new website that will provide students with a one stop shop for assessment information.


Following the successful launch of the staff assessment website, Assessment Essentials, in November, we are now focusing on developing a similar site for the students (yet to be named)!

It’s important that the representatives are involved in the development of the website to ensure that the student body will engage with it when it’s ready to launch in September 2016.

We’re running three more workshops between February and April and hope to gather a broad range of feedback from student representatives in all four faculties and throughout all levels of study.20160120_175051

2015 a year in review

AJP team

AJP Team from left to right: David Chegwidden, Laura McNally, Joe Wilcox, Stuart Hepplestone, Kathy Davies; Paul Dewsnap; Jon Childs; Amy Nathan; Amanda Twiss. Absent members include Kathryn Roughton, Emma Richardson and Lucy Green.

Last year was a busy year as the Assessment Journey Programme moved from investigation and planning into the delivery phase.   Working closely with faculties, the programme team started an intense 12 months of engagement with staff and students, including focus groups and workshops, presentations at departmental meetings and ‘show and tell’ sessions for the Teaching and Learning, Assessment Exchange and all staff conferences.

2015 saw the launch of Assessment Essentials, an online resource created to support assessment design and delivery.  The website was developed with input from academics and professional services staff to ensure the content, design and feel of the new resource met the needs of all its users before it went live in November 2015.

The team will also continue to compile a comprehensive library of online and assessment design case studies for academics.

Faculty TEL teams and the AJP team have been working to establish what support staff will need to ensure a smooth transition to the online management of assessment.   Training and support models have been developed in partnership with Faculties with each benefiting from the recruitment of a graduate intern to provide at elbow training on a range of online tools for marking and feedback.

The introduction of online receipting for Blackboard submissions and Print to Mark services have been welcomed by staff and students and signify the start of a range of developments we will build on in 2016.

Looking ahead to 2016, one of the key areas of development will be the design and launch of the assessment website for students, offering guidance and information about all aspects of the assessment process.

There will be a number of other key areas of technical development that aim to provide support for staff; the technical team will work closely with the University’s biggest suppliers, Blackboard and Tribal (SITS), to deliver some significant changes including the ability to batch upload feedback to Grade Centre.  The provision of a course view for students of their feedback and marks will be delivered, accessible by staff.  Another ambitious piece of work will aim to integrate Blackboard and SITS to allow the transfer of marks from Blackboard to SITS.   The main benefits of these pieces of work will be to improve our systems and in the long term, reduce inefficiencies for staff whilst improving the experience for students.

We’d like to thank everyone who has been involved with the programme so far and look forward to another successful year!

Map My Programme Masterclass

A workshop has been arranged for the 21 January 2016 to demonstrate the course-level assessment and feedback visualiser tool, Map My Programme.  The workshop will be led by one of the developers of the tool, Simon Walker from Greenwich University’s Educational Development Unit.  This will be useful for courses seeking to improve satisfaction with assessment and feedback or raise attainment and could be particularly useful for course teams preparing for validation or review activities. Read more about the workshop.

To book a place your place, please email Dean Rhodes at