International symposia

In September/October every year, CRADLE hosts a group of international and national experts to progress international research agendas in the field of higher education assessment and digital learning.

2021 symposium

CRADLE hosted its fifth international research symposium in October 2021. The theme for the 2021 Symposium was What is assessment for inclusion? Problematising inclusion, equity, and access in higher education assessment. Attendance by a varied audience from across the globe reflected the widespread interest in this area of research. CRADLE’s most significant research event of the year featured keynote presentations by renowned international researchers.

  • Dr Jan McArthur, Lancaster University, presented Creating Synergies between Assessment for Social Justice and Assessment for Inclusion.
  • Prof. Penny Jane Burke, University of Newcastle, presented Inclusive Assessment: Recognising Difference through Communities of Praxis.

The presentations highlighted the need to consider that assessment is not just for learning but also for nurturing human beings to make practical changes for inclusion. They questioned what assessment in higher education is and who is it for in contemporary discourses.

As part of the public events, CRADLE hosted an interactive panel discussion with Prof. Sarah O’Shea, Dr Jessamy GleesonDr Ben Whitburn, and Prof. Phill Dawson. The panel explored the big questions and ideas in inclusive assessment. The rich discussion raised as many questions as answers. This highlighted the need to revisit the dynamism of inclusive practices, especially in collaboration with students.

Both exciting events were just one part of a larger, invitation-only symposium held over two days. Twenty international and domestic eminent and emerging scholars attended individual sessions. Intensive discussions explored problematising mainstream assessment practices, unpacking the impacts in achievements and successes, and research contribution towards improving assessment equity.

One outcome of the symposium is the production of an open access book with participant contributions edited by the CRADLE team. The work aims to re-think assessment as designed and implemented inclusively to improve student outcomes. Underpinning the book’s premise is consideration to reframe the purpose of assessment, to move beyond ideas of assessment of learning and for learning, to assessment as representation. Importantly, it seeks to understand the purpose of university education and assessment on developing individuals for the world by supporting inclusion.

The public session recordings are also now available on YouTube:

Keynote presentation 1
Dr Jan McArthur 
Creating Synergies between Assessment for Social Justice and Assessment for Inclusion (without false binaries or destructive compromises)

Play video now (1:08:55)

Keynote presentation 2
Prof Penny Jane Burke 
Inclusive Assessment: Recognising Difference through Communities of Praxis

Play video now (1:14:11)

Public panel 
Big Questions in Inclusive Assessment

Play video now (1:22:43)

2021 delegates

Dr Taskeen Adam
University of Cambridge

Associate Professor Rola Ajjawi
Deakin University

Professor Margaret Bearman
Deakin University

Professor David Boud
Deakin University

Professor Roseanna Bourke
Massey University

Dr Matthew Brett
Deakin University

Professor Penny Jane Burke
University of Newcastle

Dr Nicole Crawford
Curtin University

Dr Joanne Dargusch
CQ University

Professor Phillip Dawson
Deakin University

Dr Janine Delahunty
University of Wollongong

Dr Mollie Dollinger
Deakin University

Dr Mary Dracup
Deakin University

Dr Johanna Funk
Charles Darwin University

Dr Jessamy Gleeson
Deakin University

Dr Lois Harris
CQ University

Professor Andrew Harvey
La Trobe University

Dr Neera Jain
University of Auckland

Dr Trina Jorre
De St Jorre Deakin University

Associate Professor Christopher Johnstone
University of Minnesota

Professor Leanne Ketterlin-Geller
Southern Methodist University

Dr Sarah Lambert
Deakin University

Dr Jan McArthur
Lancaster University

Dr Juuso Nieminen
University of Eastern Finland

Associate Professor Geraldine O’Neill
University College Dublin

Professor Sarah O’Shea
Curtin University

Dr Thanh Pham
Monash University

Dr Bret Stephenson
La Trobe University

Dr Joanna Tai
Deakin University

Dr Matt Thomas
Deakin University

Dr Ben Whitburn
Deakin University

2020 conference

To mark our fifth anniversary, CRADLE hosted an online higher education research conference from 19–20 October 2020. The conference theme was ‘University Assessment, Learning and Teaching: New Research Directions for a Postdigital World’.

The conference brought together local and international higher education researchers and educators, and many others with an interest in learning and teaching, for two days of thought-provoking virtual presentations and conversations.

2019 symposium

In October, CRADLE hosted the 'Advancing research in student feedback literacy' international symposium in Geelong, Australia.

The symposium brought together leading international feedback researchers for three days of generative discussion and collaboration, including a public panel session exploring the current landscape of student feedback literacy and its future horizons (recording available here). The major outcome of this symposium will be a series of research papers that further our understandings of student feedback literacy.

2019 delegates group

2019 delegates

Professor David Carless
Professor, Faculty of Education, University of Hong Kong

Associate Professor Anastasiya Lipnevich
Associate Professor, Queens College and the Graduate Center, City University of New York

Professor Elizabeth Molloy
Professor, Melbourne Medical School, University of Melbourne

Dr Naomi Winstone
Director, Surrey Assessment and Learning Lab, University of Surrey

2018 symposium

In September, CRADLE and Monash University’s Digital Education Research group co-hosted the ‘Feedback that makes a difference’ international symposium in Prato, Italy.

The symposium brought together leading international feedback researchers to explore how we might conceptualise, design for, evaluate and research the impact of feedback over time and across diverse contexts. The major outcome of this symposium will be a book titled The impact of feedback in higher education, to be submitted to the publishers, Palgrave MacMillan, in 2019.

2018 delegates

Professor David Carless
Professor, Faculty of Education, University of Hong Kong

Professor Dragan Gašević
Professor of Learning Analytics, Faculty of Education, Monash University

Dr Ernesto Panadero
Researcher, Developmental and Educational Psychology Department, Universidad Autónoma de Madrid

Professor Jan-Willem Strijbos
Professor, Groningen Institute for Educational Research, University of Groningen

Dr Naomi Winstone
Director, Surrey Assessment and Learning Lab, University of Surrey

2017 symposium

In October, Professor David Boud and CRADLE staff hosted two days of high-level research conversations on the topic of 'New opportunities: re-imagining assessment in a digital world'.

The symposium explored how assessment for learning can be refreshed and redesigned in a digital landscape. The symposium explored the questions of:

  • What are the assessment and feedback challenges that we can now address more readily?
  • What can we now conceive of in assessment that was previously beyond our imagination?
  • What research agendas do we need to explore these new opportunities? How can we move from exciting innovation to routine practice?

The symposium and the associated book will provide a different way of thinking about assessment in a digital world. It considers how technologies and assessment can be more than the sum of their parts.

2017 delegates

Dr Yoon Jeon Kim
Research scientist, Teaching Systems Lab, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Massachusetts, USA
'Authentic assessment for higher education: what and how'

Professor Dirk Ifenthaler
Chair and Professor for Learning, Design and Technology, University of Mannheim, Germany
'Considerations for enhancing educational assessment and feedback in technology-rich learning environments'

Professor Dragan Gasevic
Chair in Learning Analytics and Informatics, Moray House School of Education and School of Informatics, University of Edinburgh, Scotland, UK
'Towards strengthening links between learning analytics and assessment'

Associate Professor Abelardo Pardo
Associate Professor, School of Electrical and Information Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and Information Technologies, The University of Sydney
'The effect of data in assessments in the digital age'

Dr Lois Harris
Senior Postdoctoral Fellow, School of Education and the Arts, Central Queensland University
'Catering for diversity in a digital age: reconsidering assessment if equity is a major higher education goal'

Professor Sue Bennett
Professor, Head of School, School of Education, Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Wollongong
'Designing online assessment to support student task understanding'

Dr Edd Pitt
Lecturer in Higher Education & Academic Practice & PGCHE, Programme Director, University of Kent, Canterbury, Kent, UK
Invited discussant: 'Self and peer assessment'

2016 symposium

Developing Evaluative Judgement in a Digital World

The 2016 symposium focused researcher attention on the topic of 'Developing Evaluative Judgement in a Digital World'.

The major outcome from this international symposium is the book Developing Evaluative Judgement in Higher Education: Assessment for knowing and producing quality work, which was published by Routledge in early 2018.

CRADLE news

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