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Blog for assessment provide a medium for interactive online communication, in line with constructivist pedagogy (Biggs and Tang, 2007). Blog posts can contain text, images, videos and hyperlinks offering great opportunities to reach a wider audience. Find out more about how you could use blogging in teaching and learning.

(*) Biggs, J.B. and Tang, C. (2007). Teaching for quality learning at university: What the student does. 3rd edn. Maidenhead: McGraw-Hill/Society for Research into Higher Education.

What are the benefits and value of blog based assessment?

⦿ Assessment diversity: By using blogs you can add variety in the assessment of your course/programme

⦿ Critical thinking: The use of blogs facilitates higher levels of learning (not about text resources only but all types of resources and media)

⦿ Transferable skills: Provide opportunities for enhancing IT and other digital literacy skills

⦿ Collaboration and Networking: One of the greater powers of blogs are the opportunities to reach a wide audience and create networks of readers, and communities of practice

⦿ Environmentally friendly administration: Similarly to all other electronic forms of assessment, blog based assessment is paper free format

⦿ Reflection and feedback: Blog assessment expands the opportunities for peer comments, feedback and review

What are the challenges?

⦿ Technology vs academic quality: What are your learning objectives and why is this the most appropriate form of assessment?

⦿ Group vs individual blogs: Which of the two suits your learning outcomes better?

⦿ Private vs public: Which of the two is the most appropriate for your course and students?

⦿ Teachers’ blogging skills and knowledge vs Student preparation: How are you going to support your students?

⦿ Choice of blogging platform to be used: Which platform can better cater your needs? Platforms for your consideration: Moodle OU blog activity, LSE blogs (WordPress), Edu blogs (free blogs for education)

⦿ Marking and feedback considerations: What are the marking criteria (rubric) you will be using and how are you going to communicate this with your students? How are you you going to promote self and peer feedback and the development of a community of practice? (Caldwell and Heaton 2016)

(*) Caldwell, H. and Heaton, R. (2016). The interdisciplinary use of blogs and online communities in teacher education. International Journal of Information and Learning Technology. 33 (3) 2056­4880.

What are the recommendations for good practice?

⦿ Check your course’s learning outcomes to ensure the technology and the task are aligned (Biggs, no date).

⦿ Provide student training to remove fear of the unknown especially among those students who never used blogs before

⦿ Clearly communicate to your students the assessment plan and expectations (Luca and McLoughlin, 2005)

⦿ Provide opportunities for practicing prior to the final submission (via formative) – Encourage risk taking (Farmer, Yue, and Brooks, 2008)

⦿ Prepare and communicate the assessment marking criteria and rubrics

⦿ Build early feedback into the experience. Provide opportunities for peer feedback to build self-assessment literacy

(*) Biggs, J. (no date). Aligning teaching for constructing learning. Available at: https://www.heacademy.ac.uk/system/files/resources/id477_aligning_teaching_for_constructing_learning.pdf (Accessed: 3 February 2017).

(*) Luca, J. and McLoughlin, C. (2005). Can blogs promote fair and equitable teamwork? In Balance, fidelity, mobility: Maintaining the momentum? Proceedings ASCILITE Brisbane.

(*) Farmer, B., Yue, A. and Brooks, C. (2008). Using blogging for higher order learning in large cohort university teaching: A case study. Australasian Journal of Educational Technology 24(2), 123–136.

Contact lti.support@lse.ac.uk to discuss your requirements

Blogs for assessment

Dr Michael Muthukrishna for PS110
Dr Muthukrishna used Moodle OU blog activity in summative assessment. Students had to write two media/blog posts  summarising key findings in psychology. Read more…

Dr Harry Walker for AN300
Dr Walker used LSE blogs (WordPress) in summative assessment. Students had to design and manage their own blog. Read more… (coming soon!)

Blogging in teaching and learning

LSE innovator Connson Locke  coming soon

TLC’s Guidance on blogging

Biggs, J.B. and Tang, C. (2007). Teaching for quality learning at university: What the student does. 3rd edn. Maidenhead: McGraw-Hill/Society for Research into Higher Education.

Biggs, J. (no date). Aligning teaching for constructing learning. Available at: https://www.heacademy.ac.uk/system/files/resources/id477_aligning_teaching_for_constructing_learning.pdf (Accessed: 3 February 2017).

Caldwell, H. and Heaton, R. (2016). The interdisciplinary use of blogs and online communities in teacher education. International Journal of Information and Learning Technology. 33 (3) 2056­4880.

Farmer, B., Yue, A. and Brooks, C. (2008). Using blogging for higher order learning in large cohort university teaching: A case study. Australasian Journal of Educational Technology 24(2), 123–136.

Luca, J. and McLoughlin, C. (2005). Can blogs promote fair and equitable teamwork? In Balance, fidelity, mobility: Maintaining the momentum? Proceedings ASCILITE Brisbane.