Students’ perception of frequent assessments and its relation to motivation and grades in a statistics course: a pilot study

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    Abstract

    This pilot study measures university students’ perceptions of graded frequent assessments in an obligatory statistics course using a novel questionnaire. Relations between perceptions of frequent assessments, intrinsic motivation and grades were also investigated. A factor analysis of the questionnaire revealed four factors, which were labelled value, formative function, positive effects and negative effects. The results showed that most students valued graded frequent assessments as a study motivator. A modest number of students experienced positive or negative effects from assessments and grades received. Less than half of the students used the results of frequent assessments in their learning process. The perception of negative effects (lower self-confidence and more stress) negatively mediated the relation between grades and intrinsic motivation. It is argued that communication with students regarding the purpose and benefits of frequent assessments could mitigate these negative effects.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)872-886
    Number of pages15
    JournalAssessment and Evaluation in Higher Education
    Volume42
    Issue number6
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 18 Aug 2017

    Keywords

    • Frequent assessment
    • grades
    • intrinsic motivation
    • perceptions

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