Assessment Methods

Overview

The purpose of assessments is to ensure that you have achieved the learning outcomes of the module. While the teaching takes place in the classroom, your learning will also take place in preparatory reading or other activities for classes, the reading and thinking that is involved in the writing of your assessment, the feedback from a marked piece of work, in informal conversation and discussion with other students and with faculty.

Students can usually choose an essay or other assessment task from a range of options that will be given to the class at the beginning of the module. The length of the essay will be specified in terms of a word count and assignments will have an indicative reading list. In many cases the assessment takes the form of an essay. However, some modules require other forms of assessment that allow for greater creativity, different learning styles and, above all, which ensure that you make connections between the learning of the module and practical experience and ministry.

Examples of other kinds of assessment might include:

  • a response to a case study
  • a learning journal
  • a sermon
  • a theological reflection on a critical incident
  • a group presentation for a specific context
  • preparing a liturgy for a special occasion
  • a book review
  • writing an imaginary dialogue of a pastoral situation
  • lay training programme for developing skills in pastoral care among church members
  • a portfolio

Guidelines

General guidelines for the different types of assessment can be found on Moodle or on the following link: dur.ac.uk/common.awards/assessment/guidelines. If you are not sure, do not hesitate to ask for clarification from the module tutor. In general, however, tutors do not read outlines or drafts of essays.

The amount of time that you spend completing an assessment is directly proportional to the credit-weighting of the module: an assignment for a 20-credit module should take twice as long to prepare as an assignment for a 10-credit module. Some modules require more than one assignment, or are assessed by examination.

Assessment Criteria

The most important aspect of an assessment is the learning that you have done in completing it, not the mark that you receive! It is good to remember that the purpose of your assignment is to demonstrate to yourself and to the reader that you have a good grasp of the subject matter and a clear and persuasive answer to the question posed by the title or task.

Students should familiarise themselves with the detailed marking criteria which are available on Moodle and on the following link: dur.ac.uk/common.awards/assessment/criteria. Students must make sure that assignments follow the conventions stated in the Style Guide found on Moodle.

You will receive more detailed assessment information through our Student Handbook when you begin your studies at Trinity.

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