An exploratory study into the impact and acceptability of formatively used progress testing in postgraduate obstetrics and gynaecology

Marja Dijksterhuis, Lambertus Schuwirth, Didi Braat, Fedde Scheele

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    7 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Part of recent reforms of postgraduate medical training in the Netherlands is the introduction of formatively intended knowledge testing or progress testing. We previously evaluated the construct validity and reliability of postgraduate progress testing. However, when assessment is intended to be formative, the acceptability of the test (scores) and the educational impact that is achieved are at least as important in the utility of this assessment format. We developed a questionnaire targeted at both educational supervisors and postgraduate trainees, containing questions on general acceptability, educational impact and acceptability of test content. 90 % of trainees and 84 % of educational supervisors completed the questionnaire. The general acceptability of formatively used progress testing is good; however, the self-reported educational impact is limited. Furthermore, trainees query the validity of test content. Formatively intended progress testing is well accepted; however the impact is limited. We discuss the importance of feedback quality and the effect of grading. Furthermore we start a debate on whether, for a genuine effect on learning, formative assessment should have consequences, either by entwining the assessment with the training programme or by linking the assessment to a summative standard.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)126-141
    Number of pages16
    JournalPerspectives on Medical Education
    Volume2
    Issue number3
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2013

    Keywords

    • Acceptability
    • Educational impact
    • Formative assessment
    • Postgraduate
    • Progress test

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