Supporting diverse students : developing learner autonomy via assessment

Liz McDowell, Alistair Sambell, Kay Sambell

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


This chapter focuses on two case studies in which lecturers aimed to use assessment as a pedagogic technique to foster learner autonomy. Analysis of the student viewpoint is used to highlight some of the issues that surround the use of assessment to develop autonomy as an outcome, particularly in the context of increasing student diversity. Formative and summative self-evaluation activities, and the closely related activity of peer-assessment or reciprocal peer feedback situations, are becoming increasingly common in higher education (Brown et al., 1997; Segers et al., 2003). Often this is because they are considered to be valuable activities that develop students’ abilities to become realistic judges of their own performance, enabling them to monitor their own learning effectively, rather than relying on their teachers to fulfil this role for them. As such, they are commonly regarded as important tools for learning, frequently linked to the notion of promoting, practising and developing autonomy (Boud, 1995; Hinett and Thomas, 1999; Knight and Yorke, 2003).
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInnovative Assessment in Higher Education
EditorsCordelia Bryan, Karen Clegg
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherTaylor & Francis
Number of pages233
ISBN (Print)978-0415356428
Publication statusPublished - 2006


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