The VIII annual international conference of the Eurasian Association for Educational Assessment (EAOKO) was held on November 14-15 in Minsk. Each year a conference topic concerning education assessment is selected according to its significance for partner countries. So, in 2018, the focus was on national exams. In 2019, the topic of the conference was school, in-classroom and criterial assessment of education quality. This year a conference was organized jointly with the Ministry of Education and the National Institute of Education of Belarus. The event was supported by Russia Education Aid for Development (READ) program, implemented by the World Bank in Russian Federation.
When it comes to assessment, countries participating in the conference have different experience and background. For example, a five-point scoring system is still being applied in Russia, while a ten-point one has been implemented in Belarus for a long time.
For two days, participants from different countries discussed how to assess not only students’ knowledge and skills, but also educational environment quality. The conference was opened by the general plenary session “Assessment of the quality of education at the national and international level”. Two other general plenums of the first day were devoted to assessment at regional, city, municipal levels and educational environment quality respectively. On the second day, workshops and seminars were held, e. g. on various types of assessment, projects and research in this area, as well as analysis of Russian experience.
The session organized by the Center for International Cooperation on Education Development (CICED) was one of them. At its course, developers of the methodology of school students’ subject achievements assessment called SAM (Students’ Achievement Monitoring) spoke about its development goals, application area and implementation experience. At the end of the session, teachers who participated in the training on the development of test items according to SAM methodology shared experience in compiling them and presented examples of self-developed test items.
During the final session, the participants summarized the conference’s outcomes and agreed on a preliminary list of issues to be discussed at the next conference.