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The development of e-learning has opened up new opportunities for innovation in assessment practices in higher education. This descriptive case study draws upon staff and student experiences of teaching and learning on a web-based Masters programme in primary health care to explore how specific features of the online environment can be exploited to promote assessment as part of learning. It begins by identifying different ways of conceptualising assessment in order to highlight the fundamental value choices facing those developing and delivering assessment systems, and then describes our own approach to assessment. In the second part of the paper we explore two key ways in which the online learning environment enables assessment to contribute to learning-through its potential to support collaborative learning, and through facilitating high quality feedback between teachers and students. © 2006 Taylor & Francis.

Original publication




Journal article


Assessment and Evaluation in Higher Education

Publication Date





465 - 478