Primary and Secondary Teachers’ Conceptions of Assessment: A Qualitative Study

Feb. 10, 2011

This article was published in Teaching and Teacher Education, Vol 27 number 2,
Author(s): Ana Remesal, " Primary and Secondary Teachers’ Conceptions of Assessment: A Qualitative Study", Pages 472-482, Copyright Elsevier (February 2011).

The functions of assessment in school – such as improving educational processes and accountability of teachers’ and learners’- are in a constant, inherent and inevitable tension.

This article presents a particular framework of teachers’ conceptions about assessment in school.
Fifty teachers of primary and secondary school were interviewed.

The results allowed building a model of conceptions of assessment.
This model comprises four dimensions about the effects of assessment on: teaching, learning, accountability of teachers and schools to different audiences and stakeholders, and the certification of achievement.

These conceptions show some tendencies that might be linked to the intrinsic tension between the by-default co-occurrence of both pedagogic and societal functions of assessment in school, and to difficulties of implementing assessment for learning practices.
It was also found that teachers’ conceptions about assessment differ with regard to the external evaluation established in the educational system.

Updated: Dec. 15, 2011