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ERIC Number: EJ1139884
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0307-5079
Conceptual Acrobatics: Talking about Assessment Standards in the Transparency Era
Hudson, Jane; Bloxham, Sue; den Outer, Birgit; Price, Margaret
Studies in Higher Education, v42 n7 p1309-1323 2017
Since their introduction in the 1990s, explicit standards documents have pervaded higher education assessment--success likely linked to their compatibility with constructive alignment and quality assurance regimes. Researchers, however, criticise that such documents are based on a misconception of standards as explicit and absolute, when in fact standards have tacit and contextual qualities that make it impossible to codify them fully. This article considers how practitioners conceive of standards. It identifies the range of concepts of standards, and looks at which were dominant or marginal in 24 external examiners' responses to interview questions about their examining practice. The article identifies a significant gap between the theoretical positions asserted in the research literature and the conceptions held by experienced academics tasked with guaranteeing national standards. It considers implications for quality assurance and reflects on whether the dominance of transparency and accountability discourses leads academics to contort the way they talk about standards.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A