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The perceptions of Fiji primary school teachers in using classroom based student assessment procedures

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Tikoduadua, M (2014) The perceptions of Fiji primary school teachers in using classroom based student assessment procedures. Research Master thesis, University of Tasmania.

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Abstract

This research has as its theoretical framework the notion of the teacher as an agent for change in schools. The research is based on a study of 137 practising primary teachers (75% female) recruited across the Fiji primary school Years of 1 to 8. The investigation used survey methodology in the Republic of the Fiji Islands. It examined the teachers‟ perceptions associated with assessment practices since the abolishing of the formal primary school exanimations in 2009 and the transition to more Class Based Assessment (CBA) practices. In this model, assessment and learning are considered linked in three different but related ways. These are: assessment of learning (i.e., tests and examinations of the students); assessment for learning (i.e., feedback to the teacher to design appropriate program for the students involved); and assessment as learning (students reflect on what they are learning and how).
On average, teachers in this study agreed that CBA had helped them to be more innovative and creative in their teaching. The indications, are that teachers who brought examples of their students‟ work along to moderation and assessment meetings to share and discuss their teaching and students‟ learning, gained more from those meetings and were more confident about their ability to design CBA assessment tasks.
The participating teachers reported that CBA had enabled them to be better able to report to the parents of the children they were teaching about what was occurring in the classroom in terms of their students‟ learning and the classroom program of study. There were no significant gender or years of experience effects in the data, with only one question demonstrating some school Year differentiation. Teachers in Years 6 to 8 reported some advantage in the end of Year 8 formal examinations, compared to teachers in the middle and lower primary school Years.
The findings are discussed with reference to the need to reliably link classroom programing and classroom assessment and for the Fiji teachers to receive more professional development about different forms of assessment and measurement techniques, as well as more opportunities to share and discuss assessment issues between themselves. In this research the teachers identified the advantages of CBA, but how it was being implemented and interpreted in Fiji was a concern, with too great a focus on a set number of assessment items. The primary school teachers were looking for more leadership and professional in-service to facilitate a version of CBA that would be more manageable and focussed more on formative as well as summative assessment. The findings are, however, supportive of the use of CBA assessment practices in Fiji primary schools with little real evidence that teachers wanted to return to the formal examinations of the past.

Item Type: Thesis (Research Master)
Keywords: classroom based assessment, teachers, Fiji, examinations, primary schools
Copyright Holders: The Author
Copyright Information:

Copyright 2014 the Author

Date Deposited: 13 Apr 2015 04:52
Last Modified: 15 Sep 2017 00:59
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