Nina Ginsberg, Griffith University
Increasing student assessment satisfaction

Most programs that teach Academic English to international students are heavily based on teacher-led assessments in order to meet organisational benchmarks and standards. In many University English Language Centres, student feedback on course content, materials, teaching, facilities and services is usually positive. However, student feedback about assessments remains a sticky point. The challenge for teachers and administrators is how to increase student satisfaction of assessments in relevant, measurable, practical and meaningful ways. This aim of session is to reframe current ways of thinking and doing assessment, and encourage greater consideration for innovative negotiated assessments. Using the case study of an independent, experimental, collaborative, 8-week pilot internship program designed by Nina Ginsberg and four international students, this session shares unique student-developed processes that emerged during the course of the internship. The internship was an exploration of how international students could consolidate, progress and apply their English, academic, professional and personal skills in authentic and creative ways. This internship recently won the 2018 English Australia Bright Ideas Award (QLD). This session will focus on a series of unique and challenging academic and employment-related assessments devised and undertaken by the students themselves. Three student-created assessments in particular that will be unpacked in more detail are: Pivots, Most Significant Change and Working your way backwards. It is hoped that the assessments discussed in this session will provide inspiration for developing more engaging curricula and thus increase student satisfaction.

Nina Ginsberg is a Griffith University tutor and Language Instructor at GELI. She has worked with international students for over 15 years and is known for her engaging and innovative teaching and learning style. Nina has worked on all levels of General English, Academic English and Direct Pathway programs and uses quality T&L approaches, tools and practices to help progress student capacity, participation and enjoyment. Recently, Nina’s BBC Internship won English Australia’s 2018 Bright Ideas Award (QLD). Her current PhD research uses New Materialist approaches to explore how bicycles might (re)configure rural African girls’ access to secondary education.