Teachers as researchers of educational change
The case for outcomes-based assessment

Year: 2000

Author: SYMES, J

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

This paper reviews the current changes to the NSW Higher School Certificate, with particular emphasis on outcomes, and provides an overview of the political and economic reasons behind the changes. The research project explores the nature of outcomes-based assessment and the willingness of teachers to accept the new approach in their classrooms. Data were collected from a total of 26 staff members by way of a survey devised to gauge teachers‚ understanding and application of outcomes-based assessment across key learning areas, prior to the introduction of a new outcomes-based syllabus in Religion.

Results of the survey indicated that teachers held a number of misconceptions regarding outcomes-based assessment. Following an in-service program, a questionnaire was distributed for the collection of further data. Despite the workload involved, teachers responded positively to the process and readily trialled the assessment strategy in the classroom; students‚ reactions to the assessment procedure were favourable.