Relations between student perceptions of assessment authenticity, study approaches and learning outcome

Judith Gulikers*, Theo Bastiaens, Paul A. Kirschner, Liesbeth Kester

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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    This paper examines the relationships between perceptions of authenticity and alignment on study approach and learning outcome. Senior students of a vocational training program performed an authentic assessment and filled in a questionnaire about the authenticity of various assessment characteristics and the alignment between the assessment and the instruction. Deep or surface study activities and the development of generic transferable skills were measured with a questionnaire as well. Correlational analysis and structural equation modeling were used to examine the hypothesis that more perception of authenticity and alignment resulted in more deep learning and development of generic skills. Results showed that when the task, physical context and assessment form are more authentic and when there is more alignment there is also evidence of more deep learning and/or an increase in generic skill development. Authenticity perceptions did not affect surface learning. Contrary to expectations, more authentic assessment criteria resulted in a decrease in deep learning and generic skill development. The explanation might be that authentic, but too concrete criteria, focusing on specific actions, might hamper motivation and learning at least for more experienced students.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)381-400
    Number of pages20
    JournalStudies in Educational Evaluation
    Issue number4
    Publication statusPublished - 10 Oct 2006


    • student perceptions
    • assessment authenticity
    • learning outcome
    • study approaches
    • vocational education


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