Critical Assessment: A Student-Centered Approach to Assessment

  • Manisha Kaur Chase University of California, Los Angeles
Keywords: Critical Assessment, Critical Pedagogy, Assessment, Student-Centered


The proposed session sought to engage participants in a discussion about building assessment practices with students, as opposed to for students. Critical pedagogy may provide one way to redefine this previously uni-directional practice (Keesing-Styles, 2003). This approach concentrates student experience at the center of assessment, causing a power shift in status quo assessment dynamics. Engaging students can reveal that assessments do not indicate the conclusion of learning, in turn helping students perceive learning as a lifelong process.

The following proceedings present major ideas and questions which resulted from the aforementioned discussion, including theoretical uncertainty and barriers towards implementation. Suggestions for future research and practice are also proposed.

Author Biography

Manisha Kaur Chase, University of California, Los Angeles
Doctoral Student in the Human Development and Psychology program at the Graduate School of Education and Information Science, at UCLA.


A, M. (2013, March 3). How does Critical Pedagogy look like in the classroom? Critical Pedagogy in the Classroom [Blog].

Andrade, H., and Y. Du. 2005. “Student Perspectives on Rubric-referenced Assessment.”

Practical Assessment, Research & Evaluation 10 (3): 1–11.

Barnes, M. (2018, January 10). No, Students Don't Need Grades. Education Week.

Black, A.E. and Deci, E.L., (2000). The effects of instructors' autonomy support and students'

autonomous motivation on learning organic chemistry: A self‐determination theory

perspective. Science education, 84(6), pp.740-756.

Boud, D., and R. Soler. 2015. “Sustainable Assessment Revisited.” Assessment & Evaluation

in Higher Education. Advance online publication.doi:10.1080/02602938.2015.1018133.

Burbules, N., & Berk, R. (1999). Critical Thinking and Critical Pedagogy: Relations,

Differences and Limits. In T. Popkewitz & L. Fendler (Eds.), Critical Theories in

Education: Changing Terrains of Knowledge and Politics (pp. 45-65). New York:


Elwood, J., & Lundy, L. (2010). Revisioning assessment through a children’s rights approach:

implications for policy, process and practice. Research Papers in Education, 25(3), 335

DOI: 10.1080/02671522.2010.498150

Fischman, G. E., & Topper, A. M. (2017). An Examination of the Influence of International

Large Scale Assessments and Global Learning Metrics on National School Reform

Policies. Center for Advanced Studies in Global Education. doi:10.14507/casge2.2017

Flint, A., Van Sluys, K., Lewison, M. (2003). Disrupting the commonplace: Teachers

researching critical literacy. School Talk, 8(4), 1–2.

Fobes, C., & Kaufman, P. (2008). Critical Pedagogy in the Sociology Classroom. Teaching

Sociology, 36(1), 26-33. doi:10.1177/0092055x0803600104

Freire, P. (1973). Pedagogy of the oppressed. New York: Seabury Press.

General Assembly Resolution. (1996). The rights of the child. Geneva, Switzerland: Centre for

Human Rights, United Nations.

Keesing-Styles, L. (2003). The relationship between critical pedagogy and assessment in

teacher education. Radical Pedagogy 5(1).

Torrance, H. and Pryor, J., (1998). Investigating formative assessment: Teaching, learning and

assessment in the classroom. McGraw-Hill Education (UK).

Will, M. (2018, January 30). Do Students Really Need Grades? Teachers Are Divided.

Education Week Teacher.

Conference Theme: Students as Drivers