The Economics Network

Improving economics teaching and learning for over 20 years

4. Summary

This chapter has outlined a number of potential activities that could be used in order to overcome some of the limitations with more traditional methods of assessment and feedback. Two detailed cased studies have been included which outline and evaluate the introduction of two of these activities onto an economics degree programme. In each case, potential limitations have been discussed and alternative ways of running the exercises have been considered. Many tutors may argue that activities such as using exemplars and draft assignments are examples of spoon feeding and may exacerbate problems of learned dependence. However given their prior learning experience we should not expect students to arrive at university with a full understanding and appreciation of the value of feedback. Instead course teams need to consider how a range of assessment and feedback activities can be structured in an appropriate manner as students progress through different levels of a course. In particular an effective assessment strategy needs to be designed to help students manage the transition from a high-dependency learning environment to one of independent and self-directed learning.