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Professional Development Articles

Rethinking 21st Century Assessment

Feb 28, 2013 jjamison

European Journal of Education, Vol. 48, No. 1, 2013

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Conclusion
This article has argued for a paradigm shift in the use and deployment of
Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) in assessment. In the
past, eAssessment focused on increasing efficiency and effectiveness of test
administration; improving the validity and reliability of test scores; and making
a greater range of test formats susceptible to automatic scoring, with a
view to simultaneously improve efficiency and validity. Despite the variety
of computer-enhanced test formats, eAssessment strategies have been grounded
in the traditional assessment paradigm, which has for centuries domi-
nated formal education and training and is based on the explicit testing of
knowledge.
However, against the background of rapidly changing skill requirements in a
knowledge-based society, education and training systems in Europe are becoming
increasingly aware that curricula and with them assessment strategies need to
refocus on fostering more holistic ‘Key Competences’ and transversal or general
skills, such as ‘21
st
century skills’. ICT offer many opportunities for supporting
assessment formats that can capture complex skills and competences that are
otherwise difficult to assess. To seize these opportunities, research and develop-
ment in eAssessment and assessment in general must transcend the Testing Para-
digm and develop new concepts of embedded, authentic and holistic assessment.
Thus, while there is still a need to advance in the development of emerging
technological solutions to support embedded assessment, such as Learning Ana-
lytics, and integrated assessment formats, the more pressing task is to make the
conceptual shift between traditional and 21
st
century testing and develop
(e-)Assessment pedagogies, frameworks, formats and approaches that reflect the
core competences needed for life in the 21
st
century, supported by coherent
policies for embedding and implementing eAssessment in daily educational
practice.
Christine Redecker, Institute for Prospective Technological Studies (IPTS), European
Commission, Joint Research Centre, Edificio Expo, C/ Inca Garcilaso 3, 41092 Seville,
Spain, Christine.Redecker@ec.europa.eu
Øystein Johannessen, IT2ET Edu Lead, Qin AS, Gneisveien 18, N-1555 SON, Norway,
oysteinjohannessen@educationimpact.net
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