Do continuous assessment results affect final exam outcomes? Evidence from a microeconomics course

Juan Carlos Reboredo

Abstract

Continuous assessment aims to enhance student learning and understanding of a subject and so achieve better educational outcomes. We investigated how continuous assessment grades affected final exam grades. Using a dataset for six academic post-Bologna Process years (2009-2015) for a first-year undergraduate microeconomics course offered at a Spanish public university, we examined conditional dependence between continuous assessment and final exam grades. Our results would indicate a limited contribution of continuous assessment results to final exam results: the probability of the final exam performance improving on the continuous assessment grade was lower than the probability of the opposite occurring. A consistent exception, however, was students who obtained an A grade for continuous assessment. Our results would cast some doubt on the beneficial effects of continuous assessment advocated by the Bologna Process.


Keywords

Continuous assessment; final exam performance; conditional dependence

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