Assessing Students’ Multimodal Texts in the Subject of English: Synthesising Peers’ and Teachers’ Recognition of Semiotic Work
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionDesigns for Learning. 2023, 15 (1), 44-57. https://doi.org/10.16993/dfl.216
While learning activities and text production in language subjects typically include multiple forms of multimodal expression, assessment in the subjects continues to a great extent to depend on students’ written texts. As a contribution to an increasing call for alignment of curricular activities and assessment, this article explores an approach to assessment of upper secondary students’ production of multimodal persuasive texts in the subject of English as an additional language (EAL). The article reports from a design-based study comprising two classroom interventions where assessment of students’ multimodal texts was conducted separately by peer groups and the teacher and researcher in collaboration, applying assessment criteria informed by multimodal social semiotic theory and operationalisations of communicative competence. Comparing the results of peer and teacher assessment of students’ multimodal persuasive texts, agreement was found relating to representational, interactional, and compositional aspects of the texts, whereas differences in views mostly concerned nuances in interpersonal aspects. Unpacking these nuances, the article concludes that peers’ and teachers’ assessments of multimodal texts complement each other in ways that can prompt fruitful discussions on meaning making in the light of context and social factors and thus contribute to heightened semiotic awareness and a broader recognition of the students’ communicative competence in the subject.