Enquiry-based learning and formative assessment environments: student perspectives

Article English OPEN
Sambell, Kay (2010)
  • Publisher: University of Cumbria
  • Subject: X900 | Z48

This paper outlines case study research into first-year students’ experiences of enquiry based learning (EBL) on a year-long introductory theory module. Students were supported to carry out a series of authentic small-scale enquiries involving: • working in research teams; • gathering, disseminating and analysing data from the field; • sharing their interim findings as ‘work-in-progress’ reports; and • becoming involved in peer communities via a student conference. Semi-structured interviews investigated students’ experiences of EBL and its relationship to formative assessment environments. The paper reports the findings under key themes, with illustrative quotations. It illuminates the relationship between EBL and the students’ shifting ideas about studentship in the early stages of their university careers. Conceptual links between EBL as ‘research-based teaching’ and the literature on ‘assessment for learning’ are highlighted, together with implications for practice development.
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