Using peer assessment of fieldwork to enhance students’ practical training
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This is an Author's Accepted Manuscript of an article published in Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education (2014), copyright Taylor & Francis, available online at: <a href="http://www.tandfonline.com/">http://www.tandfonline.com/</a> 10.1080/02602938.2013.820823
Fieldwork training is a key component of several practical disciplines. In this study, students’ peer assessment of fieldwork is explored as a method to improve their practical training. Peer assessment theories are first discussed. A framework for peer assessment of fieldwork was proposed and steps taken for preparation of students for this task are discussed. A developed marking, feedback and moderation tool of assessment is presented. Application of peer assessment in the field was investigated over a period of two years in one under-graduate unit in the Geospatial discipline as an example. Reliability of peer assessment was estimated by measuring the difference between assessments carried out by groups of peer assessors and its validity was measured by comparing students’ marks with those given by tutors. Results show that students have gained from the peer assessment process, mainly as a formative form of assessment, by better understanding and endeavouring to achieve the objectives of field tasks. Tutors use differences among assessments made by groups of students compared to tutors’ assessments to identify field components that need better explanation of their content and assessment criteria, tutors’ expectations, and how to achieve better marks.
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