Exploring Peer and Self-Assessment as a Means of Empowering Ethnic Minority Students
O’Hara, J., McNamara, G. and Harrison, K.
Continuing the Journey to Reposition Culture and Cultural Context in Evaluation Theory and Practice
This chapter focuses on how the traditional practice of educational assessment has been impacted by the rapidly changing social, economic, demographic and cultural context in the Ireland of today. Specifically, it explores the pressure on the school system to adapt to the presence of learners from a diverse range of cultural backgrounds and the system’s response, from the viewpoints of both learners and teachers. Ireland is not new to managing the complexity of minority groups within the population. The Irish Travelling community has been an indigenous but distinct population throughout Irish history with its own discrete culture. Descended from a traditionally nomadic population who followed herds of cattle and later lived by selling their own skills and crafts, most Travellers today live settled lives in houses, but endeavor to remain true to their heritage and customs.
This chapter looks in particular at one example of a class comprising Traveller and other students where they joined the teacher in assessing their learning. Through a process of Peer and Self-Assessment, the students assessed themselves and each other. It examines the cultural responsiveness of the assessment and its impact on the inclusion of all students, including members of the Travelling community, from student and teacher perspectives.
Evaluation of the Fighting Words Creative Writing Model
Lorenzi, F. and White, I.
This report is an evaluation of the Fighting Words creative writing centre. The report presents an overview of the work and activities carried out by Fighting Words with specific reference to the use of the model with second level students. The purpose of the evaluation is twofold; firstly, to evaluate the pedagogical effectiveness and impact of the model in its current format on secondary school students, and secondly, to examine the potential transfer of the model to the second level formal curriculum.
The research, based on an analysis of the curricular changes proposed in the recent government publication A Framework for Junior Cycle, discusses the suitability of the Fighting Words model for inclusion in the formal second level curriculum.
The report finds that the Fighting Words model has considerable grounds for inclusion in the revised Junior Cycle curriculum. The report correlates the outcomes of the research with the key skills of the revised Junior Cycle and concludes that the principles underpinning the Fighting Words ethos are consistent with the key principles of the revised Junior Cycle.