Innovative Assessment in Higher Education : A Handbook for Academic Practitioners book cover
2nd Edition

Innovative Assessment in Higher Education
A Handbook for Academic Practitioners

ISBN 9781138581197
Published April 17, 2019 by Routledge
276 Pages 10 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Contextualising why assessment is still the single most important factor affecting student learning in higher education, this second edition of Innovative Assessment in Higher Education: A Handbook for Academic Practitioners offers a critical discourse about the value of assessment for learning alongside practical suggestions about how to enhance the student experience of assessment and feedback.

With 17 new chapters this edition:

  • contextualises assessment within the current higher education landscape;
  • explores how student, parent and government expectations impact on assessment design;
  • presents case studies on how to develop, incorporate and assess employability skills;
  • reviews how technology and social media can be used to enhance assessment and feedback;
  • provides examples and critical review of the use and development of feedback practices and how to assess professional, creative and performance-based subjects;
  • offers guidance on how to develop assessment that is inclusive and enables all students to advance their potential.

Bridging the gap between theory and the practical elements of assessment, Innovative Assessment in Higher Education: A Handbook for Academic Practitioners is an essential resource for busy academics looking to make a tangible difference to their academic practice and their students’ learning. This practical and accessible guide will aid both new and more experienced practitioners looking to learn more about how and why assessment in higher education can make such a difference to student learning.

Table of Contents

Foreword; Introduction: how innovative are we?; Part I: Assessment in Context; 1. Stepping back to move forward: the wder context of assessment in higher education; 2. How assessment frames student learning; 3. Changing the narrative: a programme approach to assessment through TESTA; 4. Using assessment and feedback to empower students and enhance their learning; 5. The transformative role of self- and peer-assessment in developing critical thinkers; Part II: Implementing Feedback; 6. Evaluating written feedback; 7. Assessing oral presentations: style, substance and the ‘razzle dazzle’ trap; 8. Assessing and developing employability skills through triangulated feedback; 9. Innovative Assessment: the academics’ perspective; 10. Developing students emotional literacy in assessment and feedback; 11. Developing students’ proactive engagement with feedback; Part III: Stimulating Learning; 12. Certainty-Based Marketing: stimulating thinking and improving objective tests; 13. Developing and assessing inclusivity in group learning; 14. Designing engaging assessment through the use of social media and collaborative technologies; 15. Developing autonomy via Assessment for Learning: students’ views of their involvement in self and peer review activities; 16. Assessing simulated professional practice in the performing arts; 17. Archimedean levers and assessment: disseminating digital innovation in Higher Education; Part IV: Assessing Professional Development; 18. Developing the next generation of academics: the graduate teacher assistant experience; 19. Practitioner Perspectives: utilising the UK Professional Standards Framework to design assessment; 20. Measure for measure: wider applications of practices in professional assessment; Conclusion: resilience, resourcefulness and reflections


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Cordelia Bryan is a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) and leads the HEA Recognition Scheme at University of Hertfordshire, UK. She is also Programme Leader for an international Post Graduate Certificate in Learning and Teaching in Higher Education at Rose Bruford College of Theatre and Performance, UK.

Karen Clegg is Head of Research Excellence Training at the University of York, UK, where she provides strategic direction and delivery of transferable skills, leadership and support interventions for doctoral students, researchers and senior staff. Karen is a qualified coach and Senior Fellow of the HEA.


A thoroughly revised second edition of Innovative Assessment in Higher Education is a welcome addition to the literature addressing the ‘wicked problem’ of assessment. A talented group of mainly UK-based authors provide a range of contributions to tackle perennial and fresh challenges for assessment and feedback. Well-marshalled by Cordelia Bryan and Karen Clegg, the collection offers plenty of food for thought for would-be innovators. Highly recommended.

David Carless, Professor, University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong

It is a positive delight to endorse this new edition of Innovative Assessment in Higher Education – a wonderful complement to A Handbook for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education (fifth edition , forthcoming 2019). As the demands to ensure assessment and feedback are ‘fit for purpose’ increase so do our needs for innovative solutions. Fortunately, ‘fit for purpose’ is a recurring theme in this second edition, with authors covering a range of perspectives and concerns.  Looking through the lens of employers, policy makers, well-being experts, and, most importantly, individual students, the collection highlights the need for absolute clarity with respect to the purpose and role of assessment. The range of global offerings, different approaches (which include dialogic, and those drawing on technological enhancements), and clear overriding concerns for practical approaches to drive up student learning, all make this an essential text for colleagues committed to professionalizing their own approaches. This book is a great addition to the reading list of many an accredited programme, I commend it to you!

Stephanie Marshall, Vice-Principal (Education), Queen Mary University London, UK