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Durham University

School of Education

Research Projects

Publication details

Raaper, R. (2017). Discourse Analysis of Assessment Policies in Higher Education: a Foucauldian Approach. SAGE Research Methods Cases

Author(s) from Durham


I started my PhD studies in 2012 with a strong interest in student assessment in higher education. By exploring the scholarly field of assessment studies, however, I soon realized that assessment has been most often explored in relation to constructivist approaches to learning and classroom practices. Earlier work done by sociologists saw grades as being the main currency in educational institutions; however, this was a minor voice in the field. Being inspired by a lack of critical voice in assessment studies, I wanted to re-question some of the key issues related to institutional purposes of assessment in contemporary higher education and to focus on assessment policies rather than the improvement of classroom practices. My study received guidance from Michel Foucault’s work on discipline and governmentality,

School of Education