Adaptive Formative Assessment Tasks Offered as Open Educational Resources

University of New England, Australia


This paper describes an action research project initiated in response to a lack of student engagement with unit materials in a first year politics unit at the University of New England, N.S.W, Australia. A series of online formative assessment items were developed that allowed students to assess their level of understanding for each of the six topic areas comprising the unit. Each assessment item contained a variety of quiz questions, feedback in the form of video content and were adaptive to individual responses, giving students an individualised experience based on their level of understanding. Qualitative data was collected from an online survey seeking student perceptions of the online assessment items. Thematic analysis of the survey data indicated that the assessment items were perceived to have a positive impact on students in terms of increased levels of understanding, and improved self-efficacy for summative assessment tasks. It is the intention of this project that the formative assessment tasks be made freely available under a creative commons license in order that other institutions and their students might benefit from this resource.

This project is seeking to address the biggest challenge facing higher education institutions, relevancy. A university is no longer the bastion of all knowledge. Massively Open Online Courses (MOOCs) have disrupted higher education and openness in education is something that all universities need to pursue.

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