Seeking constructive alignment of assessment in teacher education: locating the reflection in reflective writing

4.00
Hdl Handle:
http://hdl.handle.net/10547/581897
Title:
Seeking constructive alignment of assessment in teacher education: locating the reflection in reflective writing
Authors:
Croft, Julia ( 0000-0002-8615-8735 )
Abstract:
The aim of this thesis is to promote a dialogue about constructive alignment (Biggs, 1996) with a particular focus on the use of reflective writing as an assessed task in courses of teacher education and the influence it has, or does not have, on teacher reflection and/or in improving practice. The work is set against a national context in which time to reflect is being written out of teacher education as a consequence of policy which locates ‘training’ to teach increasingly within the busy-ness of school life. Persuaded by principles of constructive alignment and, therefore, troubled by student teachers’ perceptions of complex assignments which appear to have little relevance to their practice as teachers, I have undertaken an action research study (McAteer, 2013; Norton, 2009; and Wells, 2001), beginning with a conviction that it is possible to design assessment tasks which truly integrate professional and academic requirements and influence the learning activity of student teachers in ways which are meaningful for their development as teachers. Using an adaptation of the Ward and McCotter (2004) ‘Reflection Rubric’ to locate characteristics of reflection within the reflective writing submitted for assessment, the study evaluated the relationship between written reflection and academic and professional attainment and found little evidence that engagement in the reflective writing assignment had contributed to the participants’ development as teachers. I conclude that the assessment strategies of students and of the course had been either not aligned or destructively aligned. The thesis narrates my journey to the adoption of a socio-constructivist perspective, leading to greater insight into the relationship between established assessment practice and the learning activity of student teachers, and a questioning of my practice. Crucially, the notion of a ‘framework for assessment’ is broadened to encompass all assignment-related activity, the people involved and the timeframe, in addition to the task and criteria. I conclude by identifying a desire to know more about the national view of assessment in teacher education, seeking a network of colleagues in order to explore ways in which counterparts in other institutions are supporting student teachers to develop reflective practice and assess reflective writing.
Citation:
Croft, J. (2015) 'Seeking Constructive Alignment of assessment in Teacher education: Locating the reflection in reflective writing'. Professional Doctorate thesis. University of Bedfordshire
Publisher:
University of Bedfordshire
Issue Date:
Apr-2015
URI:
http://hdl.handle.net/10547/581897
Type:
Thesis or dissertation
Language:
en
Description:
A thesis submitted to the University of Bedfordshire in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor in Education
Appears in Collections:
PhD e-theses

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.contributor.authorCroft, Juliaen
dc.date.accessioned2015-11-06T12:50:09Zen
dc.date.available2015-11-06T12:50:09Zen
dc.date.issued2015-04en
dc.identifier.citationCroft, J. (2015) 'Seeking Constructive Alignment of assessment in Teacher education: Locating the reflection in reflective writing'. Professional Doctorate thesis. University of Bedfordshireen
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10547/581897en
dc.descriptionA thesis submitted to the University of Bedfordshire in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor in Educationen
dc.description.abstractThe aim of this thesis is to promote a dialogue about constructive alignment (Biggs, 1996) with a particular focus on the use of reflective writing as an assessed task in courses of teacher education and the influence it has, or does not have, on teacher reflection and/or in improving practice. The work is set against a national context in which time to reflect is being written out of teacher education as a consequence of policy which locates ‘training’ to teach increasingly within the busy-ness of school life. Persuaded by principles of constructive alignment and, therefore, troubled by student teachers’ perceptions of complex assignments which appear to have little relevance to their practice as teachers, I have undertaken an action research study (McAteer, 2013; Norton, 2009; and Wells, 2001), beginning with a conviction that it is possible to design assessment tasks which truly integrate professional and academic requirements and influence the learning activity of student teachers in ways which are meaningful for their development as teachers. Using an adaptation of the Ward and McCotter (2004) ‘Reflection Rubric’ to locate characteristics of reflection within the reflective writing submitted for assessment, the study evaluated the relationship between written reflection and academic and professional attainment and found little evidence that engagement in the reflective writing assignment had contributed to the participants’ development as teachers. I conclude that the assessment strategies of students and of the course had been either not aligned or destructively aligned. The thesis narrates my journey to the adoption of a socio-constructivist perspective, leading to greater insight into the relationship between established assessment practice and the learning activity of student teachers, and a questioning of my practice. Crucially, the notion of a ‘framework for assessment’ is broadened to encompass all assignment-related activity, the people involved and the timeframe, in addition to the task and criteria. I conclude by identifying a desire to know more about the national view of assessment in teacher education, seeking a network of colleagues in order to explore ways in which counterparts in other institutions are supporting student teachers to develop reflective practice and assess reflective writing.en
dc.language.isoenen
dc.publisherUniversity of Bedfordshireen
dc.subjectconstructive alignmenten
dc.subjectteacher educationen
dc.subjectreflective writingen
dc.subjectX100 Training Teachersen
dc.subjectassessmenten
dc.subjectteacher trainingen
dc.subjectreflective practiceen
dc.titleSeeking constructive alignment of assessment in teacher education: locating the reflection in reflective writingen
dc.typeThesis or dissertationen
dc.type.qualificationnamePhDen_GB
dc.type.qualificationlevelPhDen
dc.publisher.institutionUniversity of Bedfordshireen
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