chapter  6
9 Pages

Assessing response to Literature and the SOLO Taxonomy

WithDavid Baxter, Cal Durrant

Bethan Marshall (2014) made some important observations about the knowledge of and assessment in the subject of English. This chapter explores the appropriateness of the SOLO Taxonomy in providing nuanced descriptions of the various levels of student response to Literature both in English and literature specific courses and/or units. While responses to literature, especially in public examinations in Australia, have increasingly been assessed using criteria-based rubrics, such rubrics have tended to depend on adjectival or adverbial progressions to reflect different levels of achievement and on the consensus established within a community of practice or interpretive community to achieve inter-rater reliability. Hunter has maintained that school English, especially in relation to literature and literary analysis, has always rewarded responses in which the relationship between form and meaning is explicitly established rather than those which focus on one or the other independently. Marking guidelines are often provided to students by teachers in advance of school-based assessment tasks.