University of Hertfordshire

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  • LL-AAM

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Original languageEnglish
Number of pages8
JournalBlended Learning in Practice
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2009


Essay style questions and multiple response questions (MRQs) have long formed the basis of unseen examination in higher education. These standard assessment methods have proven to be valid, reliable, effective and efficient. Over the last decade, growing student numbers, reduced resources and wider availability of computer networks have led to the increased use of online MRQs as a method of assessment in higher education courses due, in part, to a perceived greater efficiency. However, the design of effective and valid MRQs can be time-consuming. In this paper, assessment methods used in the Biosciences programme at the University of Hertfordshire (UH) are evaluated from the viewpoint of a new lecturer setting examination questions (essays and MRQs) for the first time. Key theories and approaches to assessment of and for learning are critically appraised by considering why and how students are being assessed, with specific reference to a second year undergraduate module.

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