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Department of Education

Oxford University Centre for Educational Assessment (OUCEA)

The Oxford University Centre for Educational Assessment (OUCEA) conducts research in a wide range of assessment issues, in different sectors and educational levels.  A distinctive feature of the centre is its focus on the role of assessment in public policy and system-level change.  Our interests include the structure of qualifications, the accuracy of marking systems, validity of qualifications and the impact of qualification systems upon learning.  We actively engage with practitioners and policy-makers on current issues, collaborating with colleagues in a range of educational and assessment organisations around the world.

Our team includes the core academic staff, our doctoral students and our Masters students.  Additionally, we work with associates who have been recognised as Honorary Research Fellows or Norham Fellows by the Department and there is a further network of associates to OUCEA.

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The Centre, based in Oxford’s Department of Education, is interested in all aspects of research into assessment in education but especially assessment’s role in public policy and system-level change. The Centre’s main research aims are:

  • Conduct research into the role of assessment in developing, implementing and monitoring system-level change.
  • Develop models of educational assessment to increase understanding of learning processes, resource use and outcomes in education systems.
  • Critically examine notions of validity, reliability and standards in relation to different modes of assessment and to different purposes.
  • Evaluate the potential for the use and application of psychometrics to enhance the validity and reliability of educational assessment.
  • Explore the opportunities for, and the impacts of, new assessment technologies in test design, test distribution, test administration and results delivery.
  • Effective networking with specialists in educational assessment internationally is integral to the work of OUCEA. It works collaboratively with other researchers and agencies on the challenges confronting education systems in the quest for global qualifications and standards.



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OUCEA is part of the Department of Education, University of Oxford, 15 Norham Gardens OX2 6PY

Visitor Reception: 15 Norham Gardens

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