Rethinking assessment: inclusive assessment & standards in a dynamic and changing world


On 17 April 2024, QQI, AHEAD and the Disability Advisors Working Network (DAWN) hosted a conference on “Rethinking Assessment: Inclusive Assessment & Standards in a Dynamic and Changing World”.

The aim of this event was to encourage teaching/academic staff, leaders, academic and learner support staff, and learners from the further and higher education sectors, and Professional, Statutory & Regulatory Bodies, to reflect on the validity of their preferred approaches to assessment of learners’ achievement of intended learning outcomes (i.e., standards) and, in doing so, to reflect on how students are affected, whether those standards and assessment approaches need to be more inclusive and, if so, how to make them more inclusive.

Those who participated heard from national and international experts on:

  • the challenges to inclusive assessment and standards in contemporary teaching, learning and assessment contexts;
  • the impacts where assessment and standards are not inclusive; and
  • how we might respond to the challenges and opportunities presented.

The event also featured case studies of innovative practice in inclusive assessment and standards from across further and higher education.

Links to recordings of presentations and panel discussions on the day are available below, along with associated presentation slides and case studies.

Case study - TU Dublin Assessment Methods Compendium - consolidating an inclusive approach to assessment design through a purposeful staff–student partnership - TU Dublin

Case study - Rethinking assessment Inclusive assessment and standards in a dynamic and changing world -Templemore CFE - Tipperary ETB

Case study - Promoting Inclusive Assessment - A Collaborative Approach in Donegal ETB - Donegal ETB

Case study - Innovative Assessment Strategies in Economics - Empowering Diverse Learners through Co-Creation - UCC

Case study - 'If then Else' Inclusive Assessment and Standards for FET Skills development for Beauty Therapy - Kerry ETB

Case study - How to Achieve Inclusive Assessment in Student Support Services - Kinsale Campus-Cork CFE Cork ETB

Case study - A systems approach to unlocking student potential and the hidden curriculum - UCC

Case study - Rubrics for integrated practical assessments - LCETB

Case study - Redesign of a written-only assignment in Personal & Professional Development (L6)- 10. Rathmines CFE CDETB

Case study - Podcast Episodes as Inclusive Assessment - UCC

Case study - Inquiry Based Learning and Assessment Authentic, Universal and Accessible - DkIT

Case study - Enhancing the Academic Environment for Neurodivergent Students - A Focused Approach on ADHD in TCD - TCD

Case study - Embedding UDL practices through the use of OneNote to ensure inclusivity into assessment and standards in our ongoing teaching and learning process - Tipperary ETB -  Hennessy

Case study - Diversifying Assessment - Preparing the Next Generation for their Future - Hearing the Student Voice via an Eduvlog - DkIT - Commins

Case study - Belonging Mattering and Becoming - The First Year Experience - TU Dublin

Video case studies

Including Students in Assessment – Carlow Institute

Building in Engagement and Inclusivity in Teaching and Assessment Practice – TU Dublin

A UDL Case Study The National Sales apprenticeship Programme - MSLETB

During the event, delegates engaged in a collaborative dialogue on considerations relating to the potential development of national principles on inclusive assessment. The discussion was informed by work undertaken by Dr Geraldine O’Neill and Dr Sheena Hyland in UCD on an Assessment for Inclusion framework. 

Summary information on this work and the collaborative dialogue session is available here