Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


TITLE Assessment and History Outside the Classroom

LEVEL 05 - Postgraduate Modular Diploma or Degree Course


DEPARTMENT Languages and Humanities Education

DESCRIPTION This study area will examine the dynamics of assessment as an essential curricular feature towards effective teaching and learning in History. Prevailing theoretical perspectives that guide current thinking about the educational assessment paradigm will be analysed in view of their impact on the teaching and learning of History. The role and importance attached to examinations will be discussed using past examination papers of history as a case study.

It provides examples (resources) of how learning outside the classroom can be used to facilitate the teaching and learning of history. This programme includes a visit to a historical site along with a visit within the local community. The aim behind this fieldwork is to give practical examples and provide student teachers with hands on experiences. The hands on sessions will help the student teachers develop their ability in providing their students with opportunities to practice skills of enquiry, values analysis and clarification and problem solving in everyday situations. However, taking students outside the classroom requires careful planning of the learning activities and attention to the health and safety risks that might be faced. This unit provides guidance on these aspects of planning (logistics) for learning outside the classroom.

Study-Unit Aims:

With regard assessment, the objectives of this unit are:
- To explore ways how various assessment strategies can involve students more in the learning process and support educational improvement.
- To acquaint students with various exercises which target particular skills used in the subject of history.
- To teach how to develop assessment methods based on the principles of differentiated teaching which promote learning opportunities and valorise students’ potential.

With regard to activities outside the classroom, the objectives are:
- To formulate a variety of activities and tasks linked to the site.
- To develop an awareness of the positive impact that experiences outside the classroom have.
- To be able to identify appropriate strategies for teaching and learning outside the classroom.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
- produce a clear explanation based on the theoretical frameworks underpinning the educational assessment agenda.
- create work for pupils based on the role of assessment within the wider curriculum framework, with special reference to the History curriculum.
- work outside the classroom with clear understanding of the risk management required for teaching and learning outside the classroom.
- understand the best practical activities that can effectively take place on site.

2. Skills:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
- implement formative assessment strategies using various teaching methodologies.
- develop appropriate resources for the implementation of these strategies.
- devise an examination paper.
- master the skill to look for and select history resources on site.
- exploit site's full potential for effective teaching and learning to occur.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

- Assessment Reform Group (2011). Assessment in schools: fit for purpose?
- Assessment Reform Group, supported by the Nuffield Foundation. (1999). Assessment for Learning: beyond the Black Box. University of Cambridge School of Education. [Available online from:]
- Black, P. & Wiliam, D. (1998). Inside the Black Box: Raising standards through classroom assessment. London: King’s College.
- Black, P. & Wiliam, D. (1998). ‘Assessment and classroom learning.’ Assessment in Education, Vol. 5, Issue 1, pp. 7-74.
- Brown, G. & Burnham, S. (2014). 'Assessment after levels.' Teaching History, Issue 157, 8-17.
- Cain, K. & Neal, C. (2004). ‘Opportunities, challenges and questions: continual assessment in year 9.’ Teaching History, Issue 115, 31-36.
- Clarke, S., (2005). Formative assessment in the secondary classroom. Great Britain: Hodder Murray.
- Cottingham, M. (2004). ‘Dr Black Box or how I learned to stop worrying and love assessment.’ Teaching History, Issue 115, pp. 16-23.
- Cutajar, A. (2009). The role of assessment in the Form 2 History curriculum: an evaluation. Unpublished M.Ed. dissertation, University of Malta.
- Donaghy, L. (2014). 'Using regular, low-stakes tests to secure pupils' contextual knowledge in Year 10.' Teaching History, Issue 157, 44-51.
- Freeman, J., Philpott, J (2009). ‘Assessing Pupil Progress: transforming teacher assessment in Key Stage 3 history.’ Teaching History, Issue 137.
- Gipps, C. (1994). Beyond testing: towards a theory of Educational Assessment. London and New York: RoutledgeFalmer.
- Hargreaves, E. (2005). ‘Assessment for learning? Thinking outside the (black) box.’ Cambridge Journal of Education, Vol. 35, No. 2, pp. 213-224.
- Haydn, T., Stephen, A., Arthur, J., & Hunt, M. (2015). Learning to teach history in the secondary school. London & New York: Routledge.
- Lee, P. & Shemilt, D. (2003). ‘A scaffold, not a cage: progression and progression models in history.’ Teaching History, Issue 113, pp. 13-23.
- Qualifications and Curriculum Development Agency (2010). Assessing pupils’ progress: learners at the heart of assessment.
- Taras, M. (2005). Assessment – summative and formative – some theoretical reflections. British Journal of Educational Studies, Vol. 53 , No. 4 , Dec 2005 , pp 466–478.
- Vella, Y. (2009). In search of meaningful History teaching: a collection of research work on the teaching of History. Malta: History Teachers’ Association Publication.
- Chapman, T., (1996) “Re-constructing castles in the classroom.” Teaching History No 83 pgs 27 - 29. The Historical Association.
- Culpin, C., (1999) “No puzzle, no learning: how to make your site visits rigorous, fascinating and indispensable” Teaching History No 97 pgs 29 - 33. The Historical Association.
- Davies, I., (2001) “Beyond the classroom: developing student teachers’ work with museums and historic sites.” Teaching History No 105 pgs 42- 47. The Historical Association.
- Harnett, P., & Newman L., (1998) “ In Touch with the past: Music Making and Historical Re-enactments” Teaching History No 90 pgs 12 - 16. The Historical Association.
- Murray, M., (1999) “Three lessons about a funeral: Second World War cemeteries and twenty years of curriculum change.” Teaching History No 94 pgs 6 - 11. The Historical Association.

ADDITIONAL NOTES Pre-requisite Qualifications: A first cycle degree (70 ECTS) in History

STUDY-UNIT TYPE Lecture and Fieldwork

Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Resit Availability Weighting
Fieldwork SEM2 Yes 15%
Assignment SEM2 Yes 85%

LECTURER/S Alex Cutajar
Marie Louise Schembri D'Amato

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It should be noted that all the information in the description above applies to study-units available during the academic year 2020/1. It may be subject to change in subsequent years.