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2018 - Comparative and International Education Society Conference Words: 715 words || 
1. Vogt, Bettina. "Assessing assessment: Students’ conceptions of justice in relation to assessment in Germany and Sweden" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the Comparative and International Education Society Conference, Hilton Mexico City Reforma Hotel, Mexico City, Mexico, <Not Available>. 2019-06-25 <>
Publication Type: Panel Paper
Abstract: The paper will present the results of a comparative project focusing on just assessment in Sweden and Germany from the students’ perspective. Students are the group of actors who is most directly affected by pupil assessment; the paper tries to reconstruct their perceptions and what they find relevant in relation to just assessment. Both students and assessment are embedded in a certain socio-educational context. Therefore, the study applies a context-sensitive approach of comparison (Steiner-Khamsi, 2010). Another starting point for the study was the aim to go beyond the level of mere description towards a level of theorisation. Therefore, the second methodological cornerstone of the study was the application of a pragmatist Grounded Theory Approach (Corbin & Strauss, 1990/2008). Thus, the study combines a Grounded Theory-approach with a small-N comparison and demonstrates how such a combination can be used in a fruitful way.

The findings are based on a total of 21 focus group interviews (Kitzinger, 1995), which were successively conducted during a period of nearly three years. The 95 students who participated in the interviews attended year nine in Swedish comprehensive schools and year nine or ten in different school types of the tracked German system on the lower secondary level. In addition, also other data sources were used that helped to contextualise students’ conceptions, such as curricula, laws, handouts of official bodies.

The results are represented as analytical categories that were developed on the basis of the constant comparison of empirical and highly contextualised data. The analytical categories represent pupils’ reconstructed conceptions, which are shared by students across and within the two ‘socio-educational’ contexts. The theoretical conceptualisation that allows to understand and to theoretically explain students’ conceptions is ’meta-assessment’.

Overall, ’students’ meta-assessment’ explains the character of students’ justice conceptions regarding the assessment they experience in school. It shows how students’ conceptions are related to the conditions and consequences of the assessment they experience in the classroom on an everyday basis. ’Students’ meta-assessment’ refers to the diverging ways in which students evaluate these relations. It consists of three analytical main categories that can be said to be the basic components of ‘students’ meta-assessment’: ‘Believing in meritocracy’, ‘Ascribing responsibility’ and ‘Understanding as imperative’.

The category ‘believing in meritocracy’ refers to students’ normative conceptions regarding the internalised belief in the necessity of a meritocratic allocation of life chances via grades and certificates. However, this belief is far from being uncritical and can be more adequately understood as an acceptance due to the lack of better alternatives. The central normative belief that characterises a grade is a grade’s ‘deservedness’. While the conceptions of students in the Swedish context are more on a theoretical level, the conceptions of students in the German context are partly also referring to students’ experiences of a differentiated system.

Besides these normative conceptions, students’ conceptions also include dimensions that are bound to the situational embeddedness of the assessment that students experience on an everyday basis. Findings show that just assessment in school from a students’ perspective needs to be understood in its broader context of learning and teaching. Figuratively speaking, it could be said that a fair grade begins a long time before grading takes place and takes up more space than it requires when written down on a test or on the certificate. Here, the most central dimension of students’ justice conceptions is about the ‘ascription of responsibility’, which means students’ critical evaluation of who can and who should be made responsible for a certain grade. Overall, the analysis shows how the context-specific logics and practices of assessment are related to students’ different conceptions.

In addition, students’ experience-based conceptions also become obvious in relation to what is here called the ‘imperative of understanding’. This analytical category refers to the perceived pressure to understand the logics and practices underlying assessment and grading in different contexts and which is, in different ways, about students’ meaning making with regards to an arithmetic logic on the one hand and qualitative complexity on the other.


Corbin, J. & Strauss A. (1990/2008). Basics of Qualitative Research: Techniques and Procedures for Developing Grounded Theory. Los Angeles, CA: Sage Publications.

Kitzinger, J. (1995). Introducing focus groups. BMJ, 311(29), 299–302.

Schriewer, J. (2006). Comparative social science: characteristic problems and changing problem solutions. Comparative Education, 42(3), 299–336.

Steiner-Khamsi, G. (2010). The Politics and Economics of Comparison. Comparative Education Review, 54(3), 323–342.

2011 - 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society Words: 198 words || 
2. Piper, Benjamin. "Assessing the assessment: Early grade mathematics assessment reliability and validity" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the 55th Annual Conference of the Comparative and International Education Society, Fairmont Le Reine Elizabeth, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, <Not Available>. 2019-06-25 <>
Publication Type: Panel Paper
Abstract: The purpose of this paper is to report findings from validity and reliability studies of Early Grade Mathematics Assessment (EGMA). The EGMA has been implemented in four developing countries to date (Kenya, Liberia, Democratic Republic of Congo, and Malawi), and will be used in a number of additional countries within the next year. These early experiences with the EGMA provide researchers with the opportunity to investigate and assess the technical adequacy of the instrument across a variety of metrics, and to use the results from these analyses to refine the assessment further. The purpose of this presentation is to share the results of a variety of reliability and validity tests and describe ways that those findings dovetail to provide clear direction for the improvement of the instrument. A number of analyses were undertaken to examine the technical quality of the assessment, and the information gained is being used to refine the instrument further. These analyses will be described and the way in which the results have informed instrument development, and can continue to inform refinement, will be presented. In addition, the role of administration factors, such as inter-rater reliability and face validity, will be discussed.

2008 - International Congress for Conservation Biology Words: 204 words || 
3. Wyatt, Sarah. "ASSESSING ASSESSMENTS: UNDERSTANDING THE COSTS AND BENEFITS OF GLOBAL BIODIVERSITY ASSESSMENTS" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Congress for Conservation Biology, Convention Center, Chattanooga, TN, Jul 10, 2008 <Not Available>. 2019-06-25 <>
Publication Type: Abstract
Abstract: The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species is the internationally accepted standard for evaluating species conservation status. Since 2001, the process of collecting, evaluating, and refining the information that is the basis of the IUCN Red List has increasingly been undertaken through expert-driven global assessments of entire taxonomic/ecological groups. These global biodiversity assessments, implemented via central coordination and regional workshops, represent a significant investment of financial resources, time, and effort. For example, the Global Amphibian Assessment, completed in 2004, assessed ~6,000 species in 3 years and cost ~$2m. The current Global Marine Species Assessment will assess ~20,000 species and cost ~$10m. To date, the costs and benefits of these ongoing assessments have not been systematically assessed relative to the claim that they maximize use of resources for growing the Red List. Understanding the costs requires accounting for workshop expenses, staff time, and expert volunteer effort. The assessment process is clearly beneficial for conservation planning and leveraging funding; the benefits for capacity building, developing biodiversity indicators, informing environmental impact assessments and stimulating research are evident, but more difficult to quantify. Global biodiversity assessments can be better designed by improving knowledge of their costs and benefits and the relationships between scientific process and conservation practice.

2010 - ISME World Conference and Commission Seminars Words: 372 words || 
4. Wong, Marina. "Assessment for Learning: Music Teachers' Self-reported Assessment Practices and Perceptions of Assessment Modes" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the ISME World Conference and Commission Seminars, China Conservatory of Music (CC) and Chinese National Convention Centre (CNCC), Beijing, China, Aug 01, 2010 <Not Available>. 2019-06-25 <>
Publication Type: Spoken Paper
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: To couple with education reform in Hong Kong, assessment for learning is a novel area for music teachers in Hong Kong. Implementing assessment for learning, as in the case of implementing any new teaching approach, requires teacher effort and willingness to take risks. Teacher perception is one of the most critical factors to determine whether the effects of educational change could be successful and sustainable. Teachers construct pedagogical content knowledge acquired through training and experience related to subject matter and teaching methods. Lack of familiarity and experience in assessment for learning may result in problems of teachers’ manageability of assessment and develop negative perception for assessment. Teacher perception on assessment for learning may affect their willingness to implement it. As little or no extant research found to have investigated music teacher perception of assessment for learning, this study can contribute to this area of music education.

This study investigated the relationship between secondary school music teachers’ self-reported assessment practices and their perceptions of assessment modes according assessment for learning. A survey questionnaire was used to investigate music teachers’ self-reported assessment practices and their perception of assessment modes of assessment for learning. The content of the questionnaire was derived from an analysis of the Music Curriculum Guide (2003) of Hong Kong SAR, which reflected the direction for curriculum and assessment reform in Hong Kong. The survey consisted of three areas: qualifications and teaching experience; self-reported assessment practice; and perception of the appropriateness and ease of using assessment modes. Twenty percent of the secondary schools in Hong Kong were randomly selected. Teachers filled out the self-report survey and returned anonymously by stamped self-addressed envelopes. Correlations between teachers’ self-reported assessment practice and their perception of assessment modes were calculated.

Positive correlations were found between music teachers’ self-reported assessment practices and their perceptions of the appropriateness and ease of using the assessment modes advocated in the curriculum guide. The findings of this study can inform policy makers, teacher education institutions, and school administrators on teachers’ perception of assessment modes of assessment for learning. Appropriate support of professional development for music teachers to familiarize them with the assessment modes might help secondary music teachers to implement assessment for learning more readily and successfully in their classroom teaching.

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