A practical approach to programmatic assessment design

A. A. Timmerman*, J. Dijkstra

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

4 Citations (Web of Science)

Abstract

Assessment of complex tasks integrating several competencies calls for a programmatic design approach. As single instruments do not provide the information required to reach a robust judgment of integral performance, 73 guidelines for programmatic assessment design were developed. When simultaneously applying these interrelated guidelines, it is challenging to keep a clear overview of all assessment activities. The goal of this study was to provide practical support for applying a programmatic approach to assessment design, not bound to any specific educational paradigm. The guidelines were first applied in a postgraduate medical training setting, and a process analysis was conducted. This resulted in the identification of four steps for programmatic assessment design: evaluation, contextualisation, prioritisation and justification. Firstly, the (re)design process starts with sufficiently detailing the assessment environment and formulating the principal purpose. Key stakeholders with sufficient (assessment) expertise need to be involved in the analysis of strengths and weaknesses and identification of developmental needs. Central governance is essential to balance efforts and stakes with the principal purpose and decide on prioritisation of design decisions and selection of relevant guidelines. Finally, justification of assessment design decisions, quality assurance and external accountability close the loop, to ensure sound underpinning and continuous improvement of the assessment programme.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1169-1182
Number of pages14
JournalAdvances in Health Sciences Education
Volume22
Issue number5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2017

Keywords

  • Assessment quality
  • Programmatic assessment
  • Instructional design
  • Quality assurance
  • Medical education
  • ASSESSING PROFESSIONAL COMPETENCE
  • PRACTICE PERFORMANCE

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