IB Schools and Colleges Association

Questioning Systems of Deformative Assessment

In a series of new blog posts we want to shine a light on what it means to offer An Education for Global Citizenship. We will explore debates, emerging findings from the research literature and above all share how we at IAG are meeting the challenges and opportunities presented by both this the Fourth Industrial Revolution and the reality of an unknown future. 

In this blog we want to argue that state maintained schools within England be brave, reject a purely GCSE driven curriculum with its deformative effects upon learning and adopt an approach which enables all to engage with the tenets of the IB Middle Years Programme. We argue that the MYP as a summative assessment framework provides the most effective means of providing an education for liberation.

Questions and themes relating to low and high stakes assessment practices and reforms are addressed throughout the chapters of Berry, R., & Adamson, B., Eds., (2011) Assessment Reform in Education, Dordrecht, Netherlands: Springer. Featured authors such as my colleague Eleanore Hargreaves (UCL IOE) and Mary James (University of Cambridge) address, respectively, issues concerning the role of teacher feedback within the assessment and learning process and the manner in which assessment is interpreted and applied with variance throughout the UK (with Scotland a lantern in the modern gloom of high stakes assessment).
The most striking article is that presented in Chapter 11 (pp.155-165) through which David Scott (UCL IOE) addresses the topic, Assessment Reform: High-Stakes testing and Knowing the Contents of Other Minds.

David uses Foucault (1979) as a means to enter into an exposition of the false beliefs and dualisms at the heart of high stake assessment beliefs and practices. David uses the often impenetrable philosophy of Critical Realism (of Roy Baskar and Margaret Archer) to explore assessment thus enabling overlooked aspects such as causality ‘backwash’…. please click here to read more.