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Varierade bedömningspraktiker i samhällskunskap: Validitet och agens i lärares beslut om bedömningars syften, innehåll och metoder
Linköping University, Department of Behavioural Sciences and Learning, Education, Teaching and Learning. Linköping University, Faculty of Educational Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-3912-0611
2024 (Swedish)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)Alternative title
Varied assessment practices in Civics : Validity and agency in teachers' decisions about assessment purposes, content and methods (English)
Abstract [sv]

I denna avhandling undersöks samhällskunskapslärares bedömnings-praktiker vad gäller syften, innehåll, förmågor och metoder, samt faktorer som kan påverka lärares bedömningspraktiker. Detta undersöktes genom tematiska analyser av intervjuer med totalt nitton gymnasielärare och deras bedömningsuppgifter. Studierna visade en variation, både mellan lärarna och att enskilda samhällskunskapslärare varierade sina bedömningar. Lärarna i studierna hade varierade syften, men en råd-ande performativ diskurs, med betoning på betygskriterierna, innebar en summativ praktik med fokus på att ha underlag för betyg. Däremot uttryckte lärarna en hög grad av agens gällande innehåll och förmågor som testades och med vilka metoder. Samtidigt påverkade en ämnestradition vilket innehåll som testades. Historiskt har lärare främst testat faktakunskaper i skriftliga prov, men lärarna i studierna varierade metoderna och betonade resonerande förmågor, vilket är i linje med ämnets öppna karaktär.  

Fokuseringen på betygskriterierna är positiv för validiteten gällande betygsättning. Däremot kan validiteten i relation till formativa syften problematiseras. Betoningen på summativ bedömning innebär dock en risk för en instrumentell syn på skolan med fokus på betyg snarare än lärande. Variationen mellan lärare riskerar också att leda till problem med likvärdig bedömning där elever lär sig olika saker och utvecklar olika förmågor. Samtidigt hjälper variation fler elever att lyckas då olika metoder passar olika elever.  

Lärarna har socialiserats in i en bedömningspraktik, vilken främst har formats av deras erfarenheter, snarare än lärarutbildningen. Utbildning i bedömning skulle dock kunna öka lärares bedömarkompetens. Bedömning är svårt och komplext, där lärare behöver balansera olika syften, välja ändamålsenliga metoder i relation till syften och vilket inne-håll och vilka förmågor som ska testas, samt hantera bedömningars olika konsekvenser. Det är ett viktigt arbete, i vilket samhällskunskapslärarna har möjlighet till stor agens och professionalitet.

Abstract [en]

This thesis explores Civics teachers’ assessment practices regarding aims, content, skills and methods, and factors that may affect teachers’ assessment practices. This was examined through thematic analyses of interviews with a total of 19 upper secondary school teachers and of their assignments. The studies showed a variation, both between the teachers, and that individual Civics teachers varied their assessments. The teachers in the study had varied purposes, but a performative discourse, emphasising the grading criteria, resulted in a summative practice focusing on evidence for grading. On the other hand, the teachers expressed a high degree of agency regarding content, skills and methods. However, a subject tradition affected what content is tested. Historically, teachers have mainly tested factual knowledge in written tests, but the teachers in these studies varied their methods and emphasized reasoning skills, which is in line with the open character of the subject.   

The focus on grading criteria is positive for the validity of grading, but validity in relation to formative purposes can be problematized. However, the emphasis on summative assessment entails a risk of an instrumental view of school, focusing on grades rather than learning. Variation between teachers also risks problems arising regarding equal assessment, where students can learn different things and develop different skills. On the other hand, variation may help more students to succeed, as different methods suit different students.   

The teachers were socialised into assessment practices, which have been shaped primarily by their experiences, rather than teacher education. However, education in assessment could increase teachers’ assessment competence. Assessment is difficult and complex, and teachers need to balance different purposes, choose appropriate methods in relation to those purposes and what content and skills are to be tested, as well as deal with the various consequences of assessments. It is important work, in which Civics teachers may achieve a high degree of agency and professionalism.   

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2024. , p. 124
Series
Linköping Studies in Behavioural Science, ISSN 1654-2029 ; 256
Keywords [en]
Classroom assessment, Assessment practice, Teacher agency, Performativity, Validity, Civics, Social studies, Upper secondary school teachers, Thematic analysis
Keywords [sv]
Bedömning, Bedömningspraktik, Läraragens, Performativitet, Validitet, Samhällskunskap, Gymnasielärare, Tematisk analys
National Category
Didactics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-200805DOI: 10.3384/9789180754477ISBN: 9789180754460 (print)ISBN: 9789180754477 (electronic)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-200805DiVA, id: diva2:1836179
Public defence
2024-03-15, TemCas, TEMA, Campus Valla, Linköping, 13:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2024-02-08 Created: 2024-02-08 Last updated: 2024-02-19Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. Vad kommer på provet?: Gymnasielärares provpraxis i samhällskunskap
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Vad kommer på provet?: Gymnasielärares provpraxis i samhällskunskap
2011 (Swedish)Licentiate thesis, monograph (Other academic)
Alternative title[en]
What is tested? : Civics teachers' assessment practice in upper secondary school
Abstract [en]

The aim of this study is to investigate the assessment practices of civics teachers in upper secondary school. The main purpose is to analyze, using Bloom’s revised taxonomy, which kind of knowledge civics teachers test in their written test examinations. The analyses show that they mainly test factual and conceptual knowledge. Procedural knowledge is tested in other ways, mostly by means of essays. Metacognitive knowledge is not found in this study. In contrast to earlier findings the teachers in this study test a variation of cognitive processes. Between 50 and 90 percent of test questions relate to the category remember, but there are also questions testing the categories to understand, analyze and evaluate, only a few test apply and create. There is a good alignment in teachers’ knowledge of the grading criterions and the curriculum. There are however discrepancies between this knowledge and their testing practices, which causes some problems concerning the validity of their tests.

As the tests mainly are used for summative purposes, teachers varying practices lead to problems with grade equality. Frame factors may explain differences in practices. Mainly administrative factors such as working hours and schedule are significant, since teachers need time to prepare and to mark the tests and pupils need time to write them. Pupils also wish to have written tests and teachers adapt to this. Still, the significance of these factors is decided by teachers’ freedom of action. Most teachers know how to and want to make valid tests, but they need the time, both to prepare and to mark them, and the possibilities to extend lessons when more writing time is needed.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Karlstad: Karlstads universitet, 2011. p. 160
Series
Karlstad University Studies, ISSN 1403-8099 ; 2011:2
Keywords
assessment practices, tests, knowledge, upper secondary school, frame factors, Bloom's revised taxonomy, bedömning, prov, kunskaper, gymnasielärare, provpraxis, Blooms reviderade taxonomi, ramfaktorer
National Category
Didactics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-179510 (URN)978-91-7063-334-8 (ISBN)
Presentation
2011-04-01, Gradängsalen, Vimmerby gymnasium, Vimmerby, 13:00 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Note

Studier i de samhällsvetenskapliga ämnenas didaktik ; 5

Available from: 2021-09-22 Created: 2021-09-22 Last updated: 2024-02-08Bibliographically approved
2. Balancing diverse purposes in Civics teachers assessment decision making
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Balancing diverse purposes in Civics teachers assessment decision making
2022 (English)In: Scandinavian Journal of Educational Research, ISSN 0031-3831, E-ISSN 1470-1170Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

Internal and external factors influence teachers daily assessment decisions. The purposes of teachers assessments are crucial, as these purposes guide the assessment process. Still, little is known about teachers assessment purposes. The aim of this study is to identify and describe the different purposes of assessments that Civics teachers describe. Thirteen Civics teachers in Swedish upper secondary school were interviewed about their assessment practices. A thematic analysis generated four main themes about teachers purposes: enacting policy, improving learning, pulling for students and handling administration. There are tensions between different purposes, and teachers need to balance these in their assessment decisions and when validating. Specific Civics subject matter also influences purposes and tensions. This study contributes to the understanding of the influence of internal and external factors on teachers assessment practices in Civics, and to the understanding of the complexity of validity with multiple purposes in the school context.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
ROUTLEDGE JOURNALS, TAYLOR & FRANCIS LTD, 2022
Keywords
Classroom assessment; civics; validity; assessment decision making; assessment purposes
National Category
Pedagogical Work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-190482 (URN)10.1080/00313831.2022.2148280 (DOI)000889007500001 ()
Available from: 2022-12-12 Created: 2022-12-12 Last updated: 2024-02-08
3. Civics teachers’ assessment practices in Swedish upper secondary schools: A qualitative study.
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Civics teachers’ assessment practices in Swedish upper secondary schools: A qualitative study.
2023 (English)In: Journal of Social Science Education, E-ISSN 1618-5293, Vol. 22, no 2Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose: The aim is to qualitatively explore Civics teachers’ assessment decisions regarding content, skills, and methods in Swedish upper secondary schools.

Methodology: Thematic analyses of assignments and interviews of thirteen Civics teachers in Swedish upper secondary school.

Findings: The open Swedish curriculum and Civics syllabus enables teacher agency in assessment decisions and teachers do not find it necessary to assess all content. The thirteen teachers varied their assessment methods, which are mainly chosen from rationales other than measured content and skills. Teacher agency in assessment decisions is affected by teachers’ experiences and beliefs, Civics canonic traditions, and context, rather than education or curricular demands, except for a performative discourse focusing on grades.

Research limitations/implications: Though limited to a small sample in Swedish upper secondary schools and Civics, findings may be applicable in similar open/flexible subjects and similar national contexts.

Keywords
Civics, assessment decision making, teacher agency, assessment practice, assessment rationales, Samhällskunskap, klassrumsbedömning, läraragens, bedömningspraktik, bedömningsbeslut, bedömningsrationaler
National Category
Didactics Pedagogical Work
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-197690 (URN)10.11576/jsse-5938 (DOI)
Available from: 2023-09-07 Created: 2023-09-07 Last updated: 2024-04-19

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