In the World Library of Educationalists series, international experts themselves compile career-long collections of what they judge to be their finest pieces – extracts from books, key articles, salient research findings, major theoretical and practical contributions – so the world can read them in a single manageable volume. Readers will be able to follow the themes and strands and see how their work contributes to the development of the field.

In a collection of her most influential work spanning nearly four decades, Patricia Broadfoot applies her trademark sociological and comparative perspective to empirical studies at every level of the educational system. From her classic long-term study of the impact of changing national assessment policies on pupils and teachers in the classrooms of England and France to her sustained championship of the need for a better understanding of the impact of assessment on learning, Broadfoot has consistently championed the need for a more developed sociological understanding of assessment. Broadfoot’s accessible writing offers insights that are as novel as they are important for the education of future generations.

This book allows readers to follow themes and strands across Patricia Broadfoot’s career and will be of interest to all followers of her work and any reader interested in the development of teaching, learning and assessment.

chapter |3 pages


part Part I|70 pages

The rationality of judgement

chapter 1|52 pages

Competence, competition, content and control

How assessment mediates the relationship between education and society

chapter 2|16 pages

Selection, certification and control

Meritocracy or social reproduction?

part Part II|132 pages

Insights from comparing national education systems

chapter 3|20 pages

Towards a focus on learning and culture

Time for a new approach to comparative education?

chapter 4|19 pages

New forms of system control

The power of assessment as a tool for accountability and legitimation

chapter 5|27 pages

Using the comparative approach to understand teachers’ priorities

The ‘Bristaix’ study of English and French education

chapter 6|15 pages

Values, understanding and power

Mapping the impact of assessment policy changes on teachers’ practice through the PACE project

chapter 7|21 pages

Comparing influences on pupil achievement

Insights from the QUEST project

chapter 8|24 pages

Culture, context and policy

New perspectives on learning from the ENCOMPASS study of pupils in England, France and Denmark

part Part III|46 pages

Assessment as a policy tool

chapter 9|27 pages

Performativity versus empowerment

How the ‘assessment society’ is inhibiting the advent of a ‘learning society’

chapter 10|17 pages

Assessment as a social technology

The socio-cultural origins and implications of the ‘standards’ agenda

part Part IV|83 pages

Anticipating the futureAssessment for learning and the digital revolution

chapter 11|24 pages

Enter the ‘assessment society’

International trends and future challenges

chapter 12|25 pages

Challenging the status quo

The potential of assessment for learning

chapter 13|26 pages

Towards an assessment revolution?

The potentially transforming potential of computer-based assessment

chapter |2 pages


chapter |4 pages