TRAFFIC - Transforming Assessment and Feedback for Institutional Change


The Transforming Assessment and Feedback for Institutional Change (TRAFFIC) project ran from 2011-2014 and was part of the JISC Assessment and Feedback programme. It aimed to review institutional policies and processes associated with assessment and make recommendations for the use of technology to support enhancements. The full project plan is available.

The project began with the production of a baseline report which aimed to summarise where we are now with assessment practice and indicate the key areas for development. We spoke to members of staff in a range of roles and reviewed existing policies and practice as well as analysing student evaluations related to assessment and information from the MMUnion termly reports. We also looked at what kinds of assessment issues lead to academic appeals, how marking and feedback is organised, submission of coursework both electronically and physically, and how to make feedback more useful across a programme.

The project had a number of major outcomes:

  1. Embedding consideration of assessment processes in key institutional documents and projects  such as the revised MMU strategy for learning, teaching and assessment and the Enhancing Quality of Assessment for Learning (EQAL) project.
  2. Publishing a variety of assessment information such as personalised deadlines, feedback return dates and provisional marks to all students via portal, VLE and mobile App
  3. Collecting and using qualitative and quantitative data to influence decision-making
  4. Launching a free accredited online module on Assessment in HE.

Project outcomes have been taken forward by JISC as part of their electronic management of assessment strategy.
The project blog is still viewable.

TRAFFIC conference presentations and publications list

Baxter, S., et al. (2016). 48,000 Comments and Counting - What Does It All Mean? The Higher Education Course and Module Evaluation Conference. Oxford

Forsyth, R. (2012). Consistency is not conformity: supporting a variety of assessment practice in a diverse institutions. HEA Annual Conference. Manchester.

Ellis, C., et al. (2013). Assessment Analytics: should we do it and if so, what might it look like? ALT-C. Nottingham.

Forsyth, R. (2013). University Standards Descriptors: can you please all of the people even some of the time? . Assessment in HE, Birmingham.

Forsyth, R. and Cullen, R. (2016). "You made me fail my students!": tensions in implementing new assessment procedures. SEDA Spring Learning and Teaching Conference. Edinburgh.

Forsyth, R., et al. (2015). "Supporting the development of assessment literacy of staff through institutional process change." London Review of Education 13(34-41).

Cullen, R., et al. (2016). How do you make sense of 40,000+ free text comments? HEA Surveys Conference. Birmingham.