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School-based Assessment (SBA). = S hould B e A bandoned ? S chools/ S tudents B ecome A nnoyed. or S hould continue to B e A pplied. The answer lies in. HOW we prepare our students HOW we support our students. Strategies to support students in CMI schools to cope with SBA.

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school based assessment sba

School-based Assessment (SBA)

=Should Be Abandoned ?

Schools/Students Become Annoyed


Should continue to Be Applied

the answer lies in
The answer lies in
  • HOW we prepare our students
  • HOW we support our students
strategies to support students in cmi schools to cope with sba
Strategies to support students in CMI schools to cope with SBA
  • In daily English lessons
  • The ways we conduct the assessment
background of my school
Background of My School
  • Band 2 CMI in Kwun Tong
  • Over 35 years
  • Students – lack the exposure to English
  • So SBA is an opportunity if it is implemented with enough support to Ss
sba coordinator
SBA Coordinator

Main Duties:

1. Select texts for SBA

2. Develop SBA tasks and plan assessment schedule

3. Coordinate and standardise the assessment process

4. Conduct within-school standardization meetings and attend the inter-school ones

5. Coordinate the reporting of marks

Taken from HKEAA (2006). SBA Assessment Handbook 2008

6. Help to integrate the ideas of SBA into the curriculum (both junior forms and the HKCEE classes)

Sep - Nov

Two periods are assigned to the NET for preparing students for the assessments (mainly Group Interaction)

  • Print-fiction (novels)
  • Non-print fiction (movies)
  • Print non-fiction (books other than stories/novels)
  • Non-print non-fiction (documentary etc)

(choose 3)

nov dec bridging the gap between s 3 and s 4
Nov-Dec:Bridging the gap between S.3 and S.4

A) Pre-assessment

  • Provide additional short stories for discussion/ *class conferences
  • Individual Presentation

(Practice IP + GI; Real assessment: GI only)

class conference
*Class Conference
  • Students read the short stories and set questions
  • Discussion will be based on the questions set by Ss

Practice: Weekly Newspaper Cutting assignment

B) More emphasis on the reading logs (school-based) (tailor-made) (attachment)

C) Simplified version of the rubrics for peer assessment (attachment) – headings only

D) Checklists (what to look at when reading a story (attachment)

dec mar getting ready for the assessment
Dec – Mar: Getting ready for the assessment

A) Appreciating the text

  • Print fiction: more time to allow them to enjoy the text
  • Keep a reading log (attachment)
  • Class conferences (set their own questions and conduct the discussion on their own) (attachment)
  • Checklist
questions set by students
Questions set by students

Christmas Carol:

  • If you had a chance to know your future, would you want to know it? Why/Why not?
  • Which is more important? Love or Money?
  • If you were hired by Scrooge, could you treat Scrooge nicely, just like Bob?
  • Can vampires be our friends?


- Can human beings live with organisms from other planets?

  • If you are required to arrange match-making between your friend and your brother/sister, what will you do?
b group interaction skills
B) Group Interaction skills
  • Sample clips from HKEdCity

  • Stage a mock assessment + video- taping (1 group only)
  • Mock questions for practice
  • Simplified version of the rubrics (attachment): Peer assessment
c procedure of the assessment
C) Procedure of the assessment
  • Know the groupings in advance but the questions are given 10 mins before
  • No discussion is allowed in the preparation time
d design of the assessment
D) Design of the assessment
  • Questions aim at discussing topics beyond the text level, i.e. not content based issues
  • Allow them to reflect on their own experience and discover the relevance between the text and their daily life
  • Graded questions
Christmas Carol: Friends;

Mock: If you had no friends or family to celebrate Christmas with you, what would you do? What would you do to change yourself so that your friends and family are happy to be with you?

1)‘If you are going to send a Christmas present to Scrooge, who loves money very much, what will you choose? Why?’

2) ‘In Hong Kong, a lot of people live like Scrooge. They always think of money but never spend time on other things like family, friends etc. If you had the power, what would you do at Christmas to help those people understand the real meaning of Christmas?’

Dracula: adventure/ fighting against evil power
  • Your friend likes having adventure. He/She has found a map on the Internet showing him/her the way to an old castle where a vampire lives. He/She is planning to visit the castle and find out more about the mysterious creature. What are the things that you will suggest him/her to bring for the trip? Why?
  • You see Dracula at the arrival hall of Chek Lap Kok airport. He is planning to move and live permanently in Hong Kong. How would you persuade him not to stay here?
Bend it like Beckham: about career choice;

If your parents want you to take up jobs like lawyer, doctor or accountant, which you don’t like when you finish education, how would you persuade/ask them to let you choose your own career?

Animal Games: about what talents they would like to have
  • At night, if you lost your way in a forest and you could choose an animal to help you go home, which one would you choose? Why?
  • (Attached)
absentees new students
Absentees/New students
  • Supplementary exams
  • IP (different questions)
  • Read/Watch more

(NET’s lessons, pre-SBA practice, SBA etc)

  • Think more

(Reading logbooks, Ss set questions, class conference etc)

  • Practise more

(pre-SBA practice; Ss’ own practice)

  • Talk more

(practice, peer-feedback, class conference)

one step forward
One step forward

SBA coordinator’s duties

Not only

    • to integrate the ideas of SBA into daily lessons
  • newspaper cutting assignment—ask them to ask critical questions
  • more GI and IP practice
but also
But also
  • Long term support
    • to integrate the ideas of SBA into the Junior Form Curriculum
  • teaching of the reader  encourage authentic tasks and discussion of high-order questions
  • use of simplified rubrics
The End

Thank you very much!



  • The impact of English language School-based Assessment on the language development of 4 Secondary Four students: a case study approach exploring students’ perspectives.
general aim of the study
General aim of the study
  • To explore the impact of the English language school-based assessment (SBA) on the language development of a group of Form Four students in its initial year of formal implementation.
  • The 2007-08 academic year
research design
Research design
  • Case studies of two girls and two boys from the same Secondary Four class at a Band 1 EMI school in the New Territories in Hong Kong.
research methodology
Research methodology
  • semi-structured interviews at three stages during the year:

initially just as the students begin class work on SBA (late October-early November), at a mid-year point (Early-mid April) and at a final stage after their formal SBA assessment for Form Four (May/June 2008).

research methodology1
Research methodology
  • classroom observations of participants’ language use and interaction in group discussions during oral pair/group work activities
  • filming of group interactions at a number of stages leading up to and including the assessment chosen for final SBA grading.
  • students’ progressive language self-assessments (*SBA folder)
data analysis aims
Data analysis aims
  • To present a descriptive/analytical account of the case study participants language use
  • To document /analyse possible occasions of language development in/ through social interaction in group discussion
  • To identify links/ disparities between Ss views of the SBA as a language learning opportunity with evidence from data
research questions
Research Questions:

Main research focus question:

RQ1. Can the conditions and context of SBA

assessment enhance oral language


*Language development defined as

  • improvement in communicative competence
  • improved accuracy, fluency and complexity.
further exploratory questions
Further exploratory questions:


To what extent does social interaction in SBA group discussions enhance students’ spoken language development?

further exploratory questions1
Further exploratory questions:

RQ3. Difference in language ability

between individuals

  • affect language performance positively? (ie: scaffolding/ ZPD)
  • Negatively? Re: interpersonal dynamics/ style of interaction
  • too wide a gap b/w language abilities to allow ‘safe’ participation by all
further exploratory questions2
Further exploratory questions:


To what extent does self/peer evaluation of language needs lead to improvement in language use?

to frame data analysis of filmed excerpts
To frame data analysis of filmed excerpts:

SBA (HKEAA, 2007)

Short term goals ‘may’ include-

  • Improve stress/intonation/pronunciation, extend vocabulary
  • Develop self-assessment skills
  • Enhance social/affective skills
  • Deepen knowledge/insights into emotions/behaviour
Long term aim of SBA is-
  • To improve oral proficiency through discussion and development of learners’ self-awareness of language needs

These aims-

  • presume that discussion can lead to improved oral proficiency
  • presume that learners’ self-awareness of language needs can contribute to oral proficiency
excerpts from filmed group discussions
Excerpts from filmed group discussions
  • NOTE: Written consent has been obtained from all students (and their parents) participating in the following filmed discussions for these excerpts to be viewed at HKU as part of a thesis research paper.
show 1st excerpt 26 011 07
Show 1st excerpt (26/011/07)
  • Focus of data analysis:
  • To observe what each student can do with language under those conditions/ in that discussion
  • To observe the dynamic between interlocutors- affective issues
  • To observe how they approach the topic question/ construct their discussion
show 2nd excerpt 15 04 08 5 months later
Show 2nd excerpt (15/04/08- 5 months later…)

2 short segments - Ss in self-selected SBA groups

What themes/ patterns are evident?

Is there any evidence of change/improvement in Ss language use?

  • Fluency
  • Accuracy
  • Turn-taking
  • Vocabulary range
  • Pronunciation/ stress
  • Complexity of language patterns
  • Depth/ extension of topic content
Case study Ss perspectives’

(2nd semi-structured interview- 21/04/08)

  • on whether SBA has helped their language development so far…
G1 ‘ I can feel some..some relaxed..easily to hear .. think what to say..’
  • G2 ‘ Maybe 15% improvement I think. SBA gives us some different topics to talk about…but I can’t think about grammar and meaning when we talk fast…just what to say…we can still get the meaning even we don’t use perfect grammar, you know?’
B1 ‘Difficult for me …because I feel shy ..need time to ..warm up to talk…yes ..I like to talk with my friends’s more comfortable and I can think what I …my ideas ..can come out…they finish the sentence for me …that’s good’
B2 ‘I think about 15% improvement for me – is it only SBA …I can’t say.. mm ..but having lots of chances to talk and new vocabulary …seems to stay in here (points to head). It’s more interesting than just learning from books ..we help each other when we don’t know how to say…maybe more real…like real conversation.’
self and peer assessment as tools to develop students oral communication strategies

Self- and Peer Assessmentas Tools to Develop Students’Oral Communication Strategies

Karri Lam

SBA seminar

May 9, 2008


“When students assess their own or peer’s language, they are really engaging in Assessment for Learning” (Black & Wiliam; 1998).


  • "Self-assessment aims to help students develop the ability to assess their own performance and the ability to be self-critical" (Hedge, 2000: 94)


  • Through engaging with classmates’ performance, students can engage in peer learning and develop a heightened awareness of the characteristics of oral English.
self and peer assessment action research chan lee sun 2007
Self- and Peer Assessment Action Research (Chan, Lee & Sun, 2007)

Research Background

  • English language subject
  • Junior form students
  • CMI & lower banding
  • S1 (53 students) & S2 (20 students)
  • Self- and Peer-assessment
  • Communication strategies or Criteria
  • 2 cycles
self and peer assessment action research chan lee sun 20071
Self- and Peer Assessment Action Research (Chan, Lee & Sun, 2007)

Research questions

  • What are the perceptions of teachers and students towards self- and peer-assessments?
  • To what extent do self- and peer-assessments raise the awareness of students’ oral communication strategies?
self and peer assessment action research chan lee sun 20072
Self- and Peer Assessment Action Research (Chan, Lee & Sun, 2007)


  • Worksheet for brainstorming
  • 2 Video clips
  • Peer evaluation form (samples)
  • Self evaluation form
  • Video-taping of student discussions
  • Focus group interviews
  • Teacher observations
self and peer assessment action research chan lee sun 20073
Self- and Peer Assessment Action Research (Chan, Lee & Sun, 2007)


RQ1. What are the perceptions of teachers and students towards self- and peer-assessments?


  • “The students understand more about themselves, have the direction to improve, and more willing to use English”
  • “Their motivation and confidence have been increased”
self and peer assessment action research chan lee sun 20074
Self- and Peer Assessment Action Research (Chan, Lee & Sun, 2007)


  • “I think these (self- & peer-evaluations) are useful and help me to think but I don’t want to fill out the forms so many times”
  • “My target for improvement is to learn to be Bill Gate” (student target)
self and peer assessment action research chan lee sun 20075
Self- and Peer Assessment Action Research (Chan, Lee & Sun, 2007)

RQ2: To what extent do self-and peer-assessments help students with their awareness of communication strategies?

Teacher observation

  • Students learned how to observe & assess each other e.g. Speaking more fluently with fewer “Hm”, “Ah”.
  • More aware of giving responses to others.
self and peer assessment action research chan lee sun 20076
Self- and Peer Assessment Action Research (Chan, Lee, Sun; 2007)


  • “Although the topic this time is boring, I have still learned more about eye-contact, body language.” (data from a student interview)
  • “I’ve noticed that I speak louder and clearly than before”
self and peer assessment action research chan lee sun 20077
Self- and Peer Assessment Action Research (Chan, Lee, Sun; 2007)


  • Need reminders
      • “I have forgotten my targets so I don’t think I have made any improvement” (student interview)
  • Peer pressure
      • Students don’t feel comfortable criticize their friends
  • Teacher workload
      • “It’s just that it takes time and we have to manage other papers as well, I mean other skills. “ (Teacher interview)

“It’s worth it!!!”

what do we care the most
What do we care the most?
  • NOT about awarding grades to oneself (Carless, 2007)
  • Involves thinking about work in relation to standards or criteria (Carless, 2007)
  • Identifying strengths and weaknesses and more importantly how to improve (Carless, 2007)
  • Peer assessment has particular value in formative assessment (i.e. explain things to each other in familiar language) (Deakin Crick et al 2005)