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The Learning Conference 2003

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Presentation Details


Reconsidering the Link between Lifelong Learning and Assessment: Strategies to Foster Appropriate Skills and Transfer

Catherine McLoughlin, L. Marshall.

Assessment plays a critical role in learning and is often the driving force for student motivation and for educational reform. Students pay attention to those aspects of the learning experience that are assessed, but may neglect those that are not, irrespective of stated learning outcomes. Student perceptions of the focus of assessment will also influence how they learn. Too often, assessment has gone no further than verifying that students can recall key concepts and information. Traditional forms of assessment often inhibit the development of self-direction and undermine the desired educational outcomes of lifelong learning. Using a range of frameworks based on constructivism and authentic assessment, this paper will explore key dimensions and strategies for assessment of lifelong learning including:
(i) the provision of feedback on learning processes
(ii) the active involvement of students in the learning process
(iii) a focus on student planning and monitoring of their learning goals and having positive feelings about their learning.

By critically examining current assessment practices, the paper explores the rationale for changing and improving assessment processes to support lifelong learning, including the development of cognition, metacognition, motivation and affect.


Catherine McLoughlin  (Australia)
Head of School/Associate Professor
School of Education
Australian Catholic University Ltd

Associate Professor Catherine McLoughlin is Head of the School of Education, Australian Catholic University, Canberra, Australia. Her teaching and research areas include research and development in flexible and online learning, innovative pedagogy in higher education, curriculum design and assessment strategies. Dr McLoughlin is editor of the Australian Journal of Educational Technology and a member of the Program Committee of the World Conference on Educational Multimedia and Hypermedia, organized by the Association for Advancement of Computing in Education.

L. Marshall  (Australia)

Edith Cowan University

  • Liflelong learning
  • Assessment
  • Authentic experience
  • Constructivism

(30 min Conference Paper, English)