What if assessment was replaced with evidence of learning?

I am just one of many who believe that the way forward for education is to have assessment that falls naturally out of the learning. This stops assessment being the driver and puts the important thing – the learning – back in focus.

So much of our education system here in NZ – and what I see, read and hear about from overseas – is happening the wrong way around. The importance of assessment in an outcomes based, quality assurance system that effectively pits schools against each other in competition means that we can’t make progress in getting the learning to be the driver.

I propose a shift. Lets stop talking about assessment and just start focusing on evidence of learning. In this fashion, the evidence should naturally fall out of the learning occurring. You may still choose to do this with a formal assessment. But now it’s an opt-in system rather than an opt-out system.

We all know the quality of learning that occurs when it can be focused on authentic tasks and this allows that to occur far more regularly. I wonder how long it will take for NZQA and other qualifications authorities to catch up?

This post was Day 4 of my Questioning Quest


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