Document Type

Conference Proceeding


Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education


Faculty of Community Services, Education and Social Sciences


School of Communications and Multimedia


This is an Author's Accepted Manuscript of: McLoughlin, C. & Luca, J. (2001). Quality in online delivery: what does it mean for assessment in e-learning environments?. In Meeting at the crossroads. Proceedings of the 18th Annual Conference of the Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education. Melbourne, Australia, 9-12 December 2001. Available here


While a great deal has been written on the advantages and benefits of online teaching, and research continues to proliferate, many practitioners are seeking guidelines that can be applied to the design of assessment in online environments. The last decade has seen the convergence of traditional distance education with on-campus modes of delivery and work-based training signalling new models of flexible delivery. In addition, demand driven education accentuates the learner’s role and needs while the teacher has become a manager, mediator and motivator of student learning. Issues raised by national and international bodies and quality assurance agencies now seem to be addressing the same questions. How can a teaching and learning process that differs so markedly from what has been practiced for hundreds of years maintain and support quality? Who will be the guardians of quality and the innovators of learning and assessment design? This paper addresses current definitions of quality in online assessment and examines emerging expectations of what constitutes appropriate online assessment. A case study is presented of a Web-based assessment framework that is both interactive and product-oriented and involves learners in making contributions to course resources through learning activities. It is proposed that an nteractive participatory model of assessment utilises the communicative features of technology while affording a motivating and authentic assessment experience.

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