Introduction

As iCGPA system was devised to assess student’s holistic, entrepreneurial, and balanced development, the assessment tasks of students’ learning should be holistic. This means that iCGPA system must be able to assess the other primary attributes and not only knowledge and cognitive thinking skills. Aligned with the Constructive Alignment approach, the assessment tasks and learning activities require transformation and paradigm shift so that they relate directly to the desired outcomes of the course.

Therefore, higher education experts and researchers-practitioners on student assessment gathered at the Crystal Crown Hotel Petaling Jaya on 20th and 21st November 2017 for a conference-cum-workshop themed Redesigning Assessment for Holistic Learning (RAHoLE).

The two-day event was organised by University of Malaya’s (UM) Academic Enhancement and Leadership Development Centre (ADeC) in collaboration with the Academic Development Management Section, under the Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Higher Education (MOHE).

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Zuraidah Abd Manaf, Head of Malaysia Citation Centre, Department of Higher Education officiated the event on behalf of the Director General of Higher Education, Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Higher Education, YBhg. Datin Paduka Ir. Dr. Siti Hamisah Tapsir.

Aim

To bring together researchers and practitioners of innovative and alternative assessment among academics in higher education

Objectives

  • Provide a platform for international relationships among the academics, educators, researchers and practitioners involved in holistic assessment.
  • Provide publication of guidebook opportunity for assessment in higher education.
  • Opportunity to meet with plenary speaker’s the world leading thinkers and innovators in the field.
  • Provide a conducive environment for the participants to share experiences in assessments.
  • Enables triggering minds among the parties involved.

Participations

There were 120 participants who comprised 15 invited speakers, 55 publication workshop participants and 50 general participants. They are from 20 public universities, six (6) private universities, two (2) polytechnics and two (2) government agencies.

Focus

Alternative assessments, which mean any assessment that is not traditional (pen & pencil). The assessments should relate to authentic real-life problems, and students can be assessed based on process and/or product.

Activities 

RAHoLE 2017 presents a new conference format, comprising of traditional keynote speech, keynote forums and an innovative Poster-Voster Gallery Walk. The RAHoLE Poster-Voster Gallery Walk showcases poster presentations by conference participants, each accompanied by looping video and multimedia presentations. Each poster-voster features a case study of alternative assessment and is evaluated for the RAHoLE Poster-Voster Competition.

RAHoLE 2017 features a keynote speech on Redesigning Assessment for Holistic Learning by Dr. Paula Hodgson, Centre for Learning Enhancement and Research, Hong Kong. Dr. Hodgson is an international expert in higher education T&L and publishes research on peer assessment, learning and assessment, outcome-based education, and service leadership.

The conference also includes a scholarly keynote forum on Alternative Assessment in the Context of Redesigning Higher Education, and an expert-practitioner forum entitled Alternative Assessment: Voices from the Field. In Voices from the Field, expert-practitioners of holistic assessment will reflect upon their own experiences using innovative ways to assess T&L.

University of Malaya also launched UM Teaching and Learning (T&L) Circles during RAHoLE 2017. UM T&L Circles will serve as a platform for academics to share best practices and collaborate on research and Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (SoTL) to enhance student learning experience and lecturers’ teaching practices.

The Poster and Voster (video-based poster) competition featured 33 awards altogether. The awards were presented for 3 categories:

  • 3 Special awards, namely the Most Innovative Award, Most Impactful Award and Students Engagement Award;
  • 23 Poster awards (6 Golds, 8 Silvers and 9 Bronzes); and
  • 7 Voster awards (2 Golds, 2 Silvers and 3 Bronzes).

Link to the award winners: https://adec.um.edu.my/rahole-2017-winners

More information about RAHoLE 2017 conference could be viewed at https://adec.um.edu.my/about-rahole-2017.

Outputs

2 main outputs of the conference are publication of its (1) book of abstract, and (2) a quick guideline on alternative assessment.

1. Book of Abstract

The alternative assessments from 54 abstracts presented in the conference were organized into five sub-themes:

  • Group-based Assessment
  • Performance-based Assessment
  • Technology-based Assessment
  • Portfolio-based Assessment
  • Self-Assessment

The link to the Book of Abstract is:

 

2. Redesigning Assessment for Holistic Learning: A quick guide for higher education

The guidebook will feature five sub-themes: Group-based Assessment, Performance-based Assessment, Technology-based Assessment, Portfolio-based Assessment, and Self-Assessment. The main highlight of the book is case studies of alternative assessment implementation at various universities.

The quick guidebook is expected to be published in June 2018.

 

 

Feedback/Evaluation from Participants

Overall, participants of the conference provided positive feedbacks especially in terms of satisfaction with the structure of the conference that focused on highly interactive and spontaneous dialogic interactions between them, speakers and other scholars. The most appreciated aspect of the conference was the opportunity for them to contribute in the publication of a guidebook on alternative assessment that will be submitted to the Ministry of Higher Education. Some participants also recommended a continuation of RAHOLE conference in future.