Assessment Procedures

Purpose

To define faculty-specific requirements for assessment practices and ensure consistency with the University's Assessment in Coursework Units Policy (pdf). The Faculty of Education Assessment procedures should be read in conjunction with the Assessment in Coursework Units Policy (pdf) and the relevant supporting procedures contained within.

Scope

This procedure applies to all courses and units offered in the Faculty of Education unless otherwise stated, effective 1stJanuary 2016. For all units commenced with a Census date prior to the 1st January 2016 please refer to Assessment Procedures Pre-Jan 2016 (pdf).

1.1     Assessment Load

Assessment and workload requirements vary according to the weighting of a unit. The average student workload is 48 hours per week for each of the two standard semesters. Typically:

Six credit point units:

  • Two assessment tasks equivalent to 4000 words total.
  • Corresponds to an average of 24 hours of face to face and/or on line learning contact over the teaching period and 120 hours self-directed study per unit.
  • In Level One units, the first piece of assessment should not be more than 40% of total marks and must be returned to students by the end of week six.

Twelve credit point units:

  • Two assessment tasks equivalent to 8000 words total.
  • Corresponds to an average of 36 hours of face to face and/or on line learning contact over the teaching period and 250 hours self-directed study per unit.

Zero credit point units:

  • Submission of evidence of completion of placement days (observation diary, portfolio, lesson plans etc.).
  • Successful completion of stated placement days as recorded in the unit handbook entry.

Where students are required to complete professional experience as part of a compulsory course requirement, where possible, class activities will be limited or absent for units in the same progression year of study, during the scheduled placement period. Chief Examiners are encouraged not to schedule assessment tasks during professional experience activities.

1.2     Attendance Requirements

Prescribed attendance requirements are not permitted within the Faculty of Education. Academic staff are encouraged to ensure unit assessment types and due dates encourage student attendance.

Where activities are scheduled in a venue where recording facilities are available, staff must place these on Monash University Lectures Online.

1.3     Implementation of the Assessment Regime

The faculty ensures integrity of assessment is maintained through the provision and use of an assessment development checklist. Chief examiners and their teams are required review their assessment regimes through course and unit meetings (e.g Course Advisory Teams).

1.4     Amending an assessment regime

Pre-semester commencement:

Where the description and/or weighting of assessment is amended, Chief Examiners are required to submit a minor unit amendment for endorsement. All relevant committee approvals must be obtained prior to publishing amendments to the unit guide.

Post-semester commencement:

In exceptional circumstances where an amendment to the description and/or weighting of assessment requires amendment post semester commencement, Chief Examiners are required to outline the reason and rationale for the late amendment to the Associate Dean (Education). The Associate Dean (Education) approval must be obtained prior to students being notified of the amendment and minor unit amendments must also be submitted.

1.5     Electronic submission of written assessment

Chief Examiners are required to ensure that all written assessment is submitted electronically to ensure consistency and efficiency in the collection, distribution and return of written assessment. Chief Examiners must ensure that electronic submission requirements for all written assessment must be clearly stated in the unit guide.

Students are required to electronically submit written assessment via the online learning management system to provide a record of assignment submission, improve turnaround times for marking assessment, and facilitate the detection of plagiarism.

Exceptions apply only in the case of formal examinations, presentations, or when assessment is not in a written format, for example:

  • the production of multimedia items (e.g. DVDs, folio of work)
  • where assessment relates to a student's performance of a particular skill (e.g. sport, music)

Written assessment submitted electronically received after 23:55pm on the due date of the assessment will be considered as a late assessment submission and will be dealt with per 1.8 of this procedure.

1.6      Extension to assessment deadlines

Students may be provided with an extension of up to and including five calendar days. Students seeking an extension due to exceptional circumstances and for extensions beyond five calendar days must use the University Special Consideration Policy and Procedures (See Section 1.7).

Students wishing to apply for an extension must submit a request via email to the unit coordinator (or equivalent) prior to the assessment deadline.

Accepted circumstances for applying for an extension include (but are not limited to):

  • Short-term illness
  • Unforeseen employment obligations
  • Family circumstances

If an extension is granted, students must attach a copy of the email approving the extension when submitting their assessment. Approval for an extension and the duration of extension is granted by the unit coordinator (or equivalent). In exceptional circumstances, an application for an extension may be considered by the unit coordinator (or equivalent) after the assessment due date has lapsed.

Students who have not been granted either an extension or special consideration in order to submit work after the published due date will be subject to late penalties (See Section 1.8).

1.7     Special consideration

Students seeking special consideration for assessment (extensions beyond five calendar days) are required to follow the university Special Consideration Policy and Special Consideration Procedures.

To apply, refer to directions on the Special Consideration website.

  • In-Semester applications – submit to the Unit Coordinator
  • End-Semester applications – submit online.

1.8      Late assessment submission

All assessment must be submitted by the specified time on the specified due date unless an extension has been granted before the due date per 1.6 or 1.7 of this procedure.

Students must be informed of the penalty to be applied for late assessment submission through the Unit Guide.

Chief Examiners must ensure that a penalty for late submission of assessment items is applied consistently in all units according to this procedure.  An 23.55pm online submission time is recommended to enable consistency (where appropriate).

For all assessment items handed in after the official due date and time, and without an agreed extension, a 10% penalty will apply to the total possible mark for that assessment item for the first day after the due date of submission. After that, a subsequent penalty of 10% per day will be applied for each day after the due date (including weekends, and public holidays).

If the assessment item is 7 or more days overdue the work may be submitted and will be marked, but not graded. A zero grade will be awarded.

For students who have been granted an extension or special consideration, the late penalty system will apply from the revised assessment due date.

2. Group Work

2.1     Group assessment design

Before setting group work, the Chief Examiner in conjunction with the Unit Coordinator and other members of the teaching team, need to plan the objectives of the assessment task in relation to the overall unit assessment regime. When designing the task, the assessment methodology needs to be defined.

Group work is most valuable where it is designed to achieve learning objectives relating to the development of collaborative skills and aligned with Monash Graduate Attributes.

Group work should not be viewed as a way of reducing the marking load. Group work requires active involvement by the teaching team, particularly in terms of monitoring problems and intervening should a group become dysfunctional.

2.2     Managing group work

Group work assessment tasks must be carefully planned and managed to minimise student complaints and general dissatisfaction. Students must be given clear information about key aspects of the task in the unit guide.

The Chief Examiner needs to ensure that:

  • The objectives of the assessment task are clearly stated (including how they link to the unit and course learning objectives/graduate attributes)
  • Students know how the groups will be formed
  • Information is captured about each member's contribution so that individual performance can be evaluated if necessary
  • Problems are identified at an early stage so that intervention can occur in time to keep the task on track.

2.3     Managing dysfunctional groups

If a problem arises that seems insurmountable, the Unit Coordinators under the guidance of the Chief Examiner should have an alternate plan in place, such as splitting the group or specifying additional individual assessment. However, if the purpose of the group is to develop collaborative skills, a student who is unable to perform well in the group and who is not displaying these skills may be assigned a fail for the task, provided the situation and circumstances have been fully investigated first.

3. Dissemination of information to students

Chief Examiners are responsible for ensuring that students are provided with assessment details in the unit guide which adheres to the University's Assessment in Coursework Unit Policy and Procedures.

4. Feedback to students

4.1     Timing of feedback

Academic staff should return the first assessment task to students within 15 working days of the due date. Subsequent assessment tasks should be returned within 20 working days of the due date.

4.2     Quality of feedback

Students can expect to receive feedback that helps them to understand why they attained the grade awarded. Feedback should be directly related to the assessment criteria.

Feedback can be in the form of:

  • A completed rubric and written comments on student's work
  • Oral comments from teaching staff to commend and/or correct the student learning
  • Oral comments in group sessions
  • Provision of sample answers for the assessment tasks
  • An audio file and/or video

5. Marking, grading and results

5.1     Ensuring consistency in marking and grading

When a unit is in multiple modes and locations the Chief Examiner is responsible for ensuring the marking and results of each assessable task are reviewed to ensure equivalency and consistency.

All coursework assessment awarded unsatisfactory grades must be reviewed by a second assessor using the principles of blind marking.

Chief Examiners must ensure that only letter grades (not marks) are provided to students during semester for completed assessment tasks.  This is to ensure no final grades are released to students prior to Board of Examiners and the official publication of results by the University.

5.2     Resubmission of work

To support student transition, students enrolled in level one undergraduate study (i.e. EDF1XXX) may be permitted by the Chief Examiner to resubmit the first assessment task. The maximum grade that can be awarded on resubmission is a pass.

Students in subsequent year level units, or first year students who fail the second assessment piece, may only be permitted to resubmit an assessment piece if awarded an overall final grade between 45-49N. In these cases, university criteria of supplementary assessment rules must be met. The supplementary assessment grade of NS can only be awarded at Board of Examiners.

The Faculty may award a supplementary grade of NS where a student has not passed all units in exceptional circumstances - e.g in a teach out arrangement where a unit (or approved equivalent) will no longer be offered.

If a student is awarded a supplementary assessment grade of NS at the Board of Examiners, the Chief Examiner is responsible for determining whether the student is required to:

  • Resubmit an assessment piece based on feedback provided
  • Submit a new assessment piece

Results for supplementary assessment must be made available by the date specified by the Board of Examiners.

5.3     Review of an assessment task result

The review of assessment tasks policy does not apply to professional experience units.

There is no automatic right for a second grading of satisfactory work, except in the case where an error has occurred in either policy or procedure.

Students are required to initiate informal resolution within two weeks of receiving their assessment task result. The onus in all cases is on the student to outline the error in either policy or procedure. The order of contact is as follows:

  • The assessor (teaching associate or unit coordinator)
  • In the event that the matter is not resolved after discussion with the assessor (teaching associate or unit coordinator) then the Chief Examiner of the unit.
  • The matter will only be referred to the Courses Leader when the assessor and Chief Examiner are the same person.

The assessor and/or Chief Examiner will determine whether reasonable grounds for a second marking have been established.

  • If grounds are determined, a blind copy remarking of the assessment task by another assessor will be arranged.
  • If no grounds are determined, the student will be advised of the reasons why this decision has been made.
  • In all cases, the decision will be communicated to the student within two weeks of request.
  • If still unresolved, the student should be referred to the Faculty Grievance procedures.

In all circumstances, where a student's work is remarked because of an error, the last mark must stand.

5.4     Review of an overall unit result

The review of an overall unit result policy does not apply to professional experience units.

There is no automatic right for a second grading of satisfactory work, except in the case where an error has occurred in either policy or procedure.

Students are required to initiate informal resolution within two weeks of receiving their final result. The onus in all cases is on the student to outline the error in either policy or procedure. The order of contact is as follows:

  • The Chief Examiner
  • The Courses Leader

The Chief Examiner/Courses Leader will determine whether reasonable grounds for a second marking have been established.

  • If grounds are determined, a blind copy remarking of the unit assessment tasks by another assessor will be arranged.
  • If no grounds are determined, the student will be advised of the reasons why this decision has been made.
  • In all cases, the decision will be communicated to the student within two weeks of request.
  • If still unresolved, the student should be referred to the Faculty Grievance procedures.

In all circumstances, where a student's work is remarked because of an error, the last mark must stand.

5.5     Distribution of grades

It is the Chief Examiner's responsibility to determine whether scaling of marks is required to ensure equality of outcomes across different cohorts of students.

Where outcomes and grade distributions are inconsistent across modes or campuses without justification, the Chief Examiner may decide to adjust marks across a unit prior to the Board of Examiners. Where an adjustment of marks has been made by the Chief Examiner, the extent and rationale for the amendments must be reported by the Chief Examiner at the relevant Board of Examiners meeting.

Supporting policies

Assessment in Coursework Units Policy (pdf)

Supporting procedures

Assessment in Coursework Units: Development and Implementation of an Assessment Regime Procedures (pdf)

Assessment in Coursework Units: Feedback Procedures (pdf)

Assessment in Coursework Units: Examination Procedures (pdf)

Assessment in Coursework Units: Grading and Marking Procedures (pdf)

Assessment in Coursework Units: Adjustments to Assessment Procedures (pdf)

Assessment in Coursework Units: Security and Record Keeping Procedures (pdf)

Supporting documents

Faculty Assessment Development Checklist

Responsibility for implementation

  • Associate Dean (Education)
  • Director, Student Experience
  • Faculty Manager
  • Manager, Admissions and Student Services

Status

Amended

Key stakeholders

  • Program Management Sub-Committees
  • Student Engagement Committee
  • Education Portfolio

Endorsement body

Name: Education Committee
Meeting: 5/2015
Date: 20 November 2015
Agenda item: 7.9

Approval body

Name: Faculty Executive Committee
Meeting: 10/2015
Date: 18 November 2015
Agenda item: 9.3.1

Date effective

1 January 2016

Policy owner

Associate Dean (Education)
Faculty Manager

Policy author

Manager, Admissions & Student Services

Content enquiries

Admissions & Student Services Office, Faculty of Education