College Assessment for Learning Program (CALP)

Year: 2012

Author: Adnum, Judy, Hingston, June

Type of paper: Refereed paper


The College Assessment for Learning Program (CALP) was initiated in order to improve student learning outcomes and to strengthen professional conversations across three campuses. It was based on a backward mapping process developed earlier at one of the junior campuses with successful outcomes.

Analysis of NAPLAN, School Certificate and Higher School Certificate found that students in the middle and upper bands of academic achievement were not progressing at the same level as those in the lower bands. Teachers on all campuses had concerns about student non-completion of assessment tasks, quality of submitted work, level of engagement and understanding of the task requirements.

Staff were introduced to the CALP model. They then critiqued and modified their current assessment tasks against this. Evaluation based upon task completion and student improvement occurred once students had submitted the task and feedback had been given. Further refinement of the teaching programs then occurred.

CALP has been a successful initiative. Student assignment submission rates, individual improvement, explicit teaching of criteria and smoother academic transition from the junior to the senior campus has been observed. Conversations across campuses are of a highly professional and collaborative nature. The clear focus on assessment has strengthened the College ethos.