About Us (Transforming Assessment)

As 'Transforming Assessment', we are interested in how assessment tasks (both formative and summative) are set and graded within the online environment. Secondly how performance data is collected and then used to give a mark and feedback to students. i.e. such that the assessment process is integrated into the online teaching environment itself. This includes having students carry out the assessment tasks, tracking performance, providing guidance, summing grades and providing feedback.

We have created (both developed ourselves and gathered from others) a collection of exemplars demonstrating complete or part e-assessment workflows within the online environment that will be showcased online and face to face at conferences, workshops and web seminars (webinars).

'Transforming Assessment' is the name coined to describe our work. We are entirely non-profit and aim to provide content and resources for free to the academic community and the public. Membership to our news/mailing list, websites and social media groups is free as is attendance at our webinars.

Our History

Transforming Assessment started as an Australian Learning and Teaching Council (ALTC) national fellowship program lead by Professor Geoff Crisp with assistance from Dr Mathew Hillier and Mr Shamim Joarder. The work was funded by the ALTC from 2009 to the end of 2011 and was based at the University of Adelaide. During this period the first set of assessment examples were constructed to showcase technologies in the context of e-assessment. These included, discussion forums, voice boards, virtual classroom platforms, social networking (Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin), multimedia (YouTube, Flickr, QVR), e-portfolios, blogs, wikis, serious games, simulations, virtual worlds (second life, open sim, thinking worlds), voting/polling (votapedia, clickers), L.M.S (Moodle 1.9, Blackboard/Webct), virtual labs, remote labs and augmented reality. The first year-long series of webinars (online seminars) was run allowing audiences from Australasia to the UK to share knowledge around e-assessment practices.

The aim of the original fellowship was to develop strategies to assist teachers and higher education institutions align their learning, teaching and assessment practices in a rapidly changing digital context, particularly within web 2.0 environments. Web 2.0 in this case means the ideal of participatory involvement in the online environment representing collaboration, social interaction, and user control.

You can read more about the fellowship and download reports from the orginal website now residing on our '.org' domain.

From 2011 to 2013 work continued on a voluntary basis to further the webinar series and upkeep for the associated websites by Professor Geoff Crisp (now at RMIT University) and Dr Mathew Hillier (now at University of Queensland) with in-kind support from these institutions. This period witnessed a dramatic growth in the webinar series through increased attendances and awareness of e-assessment across the country and internationally. An analysis of the webinar attendance to 2013 was presented as a digital poster at ASCILITE 2013 [PDF]. Additional Moodle 2+ versions were added to the e-assessment examples set.

During 2014 Dr Mathew Hillier obtained an Australian Government Office for Learning and Teaching (OLT) extension grant to revamp facilities and extend activities. This period saw the launch of the joint online conference portion of the 'eAssessment Scotland' conference in September 2013. This was a joint effort between Transforming Assessment and eAssessment Scotland, with Transforming Assessment running a track within the online conference. Transforming Assessment went on to run the majority of the online sessions in the 2014 portion of the online conference, while eAssessment Scotland focused on the on-site day conference run in Edinburgh. Proceedings from the 2013 Transforming Assessment online track and the 2014 online conference are available.

Dr Mathew Hillier and Ms Karen Sheppard published a paper discussing the role of webinars in professional development for the 2015 HERDSA conference 'Transforming Assessment via global and local learning networks' [PDF].

The funding from the OLT also bought about a new integrated website (launched in early 2015) that provides self-sign up to webinar events and a single sign-on across multiple web applications including a new Moodle 2.8 installation.

Our most recent of development was for us to become a Special Interest Group (SIG) under the umbrella of the Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education (ASCILITE). This was announced at the November 2014 ASCILITE conference in Dunedin, New Zealand.

Acknowledgements

We continue our work, as we always have, on a not-for-profit basis.

Support for this work was provided by the [former] Australian Learning and Teaching Council Ltd (ALTC), an initiative of the Australian Government Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations from 2009 to 2010.

Support for this work was provided by the Australian Government Office for Learning and Teaching (OLT) from 2013 to 2014.

Support for this work is now being provided by the Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education (ASCILITE) for 2015.

Support for this work is being provided by the University of Queensland and RMIT University as time-in-kind on an ongoing basis.

The views expressed in this website, webinars or other events do not necessarily reflect the views of the ALTC, OLT, ASCILITE or any other sponsoring organisation.

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