OECD Reviews of Evaluation and Assessment in Education: Australia 2011

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This book provides, for Australia, an independent analysis of major issues facing its educational evaluation and assessment framework, current policy initiatives, and possible future approaches. It shows how student assessment, teacher appraisal, school evaluation and system evaluation can bring about real gains in performance across Australia's school system.



The evaluation and assessment framework

Evaluation and assessment in Australia operates at four key levels: (i) National and systemic (state, territory or non-government system) – namely through the National Assessment Program and state- and territory-based assessments; (ii) School – a variety of forms of school evaluation typically in the context of a School Performance Improvement Framework; (iii) Teacher – through registration processes, performance management, and Advanced Skills Teaching positions; and (iv) Student – with instruments ranging from national standardised tests to ongoing daily formative assessment in the classroom. The overall evaluation and assessment framework appears as highly sophisticated and well conceptualised, especially at its top level (national and systemic levels). Particularly positive characteristics of the framework include the national educational goals as a solid reference point; the strong capability at the national level to steer evaluation and assessment; a focus on student outcomes; a coherent system of assessments for learning; a good structure to integrate accountability and improvement; and the commitment to transparency. Priorities for future policy development include establishing national strategies for strengthening the linkages to classroom practice; promoting greater national consistency while giving room for local diversity; improving the integration of the non-governmental sector in the overall framework; further developing some articulations within the overall framework and sustaining efforts to improve capacity for evaluation and assessment.


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