Project-Based Group Assessment in the Second Language Classroom: Understanding University Students’ Perceptions

  • David D. Qian


The field of education has witnessed substantial changes owing to the paradigm shift in the philosophy of teaching and learning. The traditional teacher-centred classroom now appears to have given way to a more liberal approach, known as the student-centred approach. This paradigm shift has caused tremendous changes in the way teaching, learning and assessing are conducted. In today’s classrooms at the tertiary level, where the teacher-centred teaching approach traditionally dominated, the student-centred approach to learning has become increasingly common. Within this context, a large number of less restrictive assessment procedures have been introduced to second-language classrooms to replace traditional tests and examinations (Qian, 2010). Such assessment procedures are generally known as alternative assessments, which are often creative, nonintrusive and task-based. Therefore, they can be seen as an extension of day-to-day classroom activities tapping into higher-order thinking and problem-solving skills (Brown & Hudson, 1998; Richards & Schmidt, 2002). Alternative assessments typically emphasize both processes and products and are often transparent in scoring by pre-established assessment criteria. More importantly, most alternative assessment procedures call upon the classroom teacher to play a critical role in designing, coordinating and conducting the assessment, as well as making effective use of the feedback to help students further improve their language proficiency.


Group Project Individual Project Traditional Test Group Assessment Pleasant Experience 
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© David D. Qian 2016

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  • David D. Qian

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