To read this content please select one of the options below:

Exploring academics’ approaches to managing team assessment

Naomi Augar (College of Business, RMIT University,Melbourne, Australia)
Carolyn J Woodley (Department of Learning Academy, Division of Student Learning, Charles Sturt University, Albury, Australia)
Despina Whitefield (College of Business, Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia)
Maxwell Winchester (College of Business and Victoria Institute, Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia)

International Journal of Educational Management

ISSN: 0951-354X

Article publication date: 8 August 2016




The purpose of this paper is to develop an understanding of academics’ approaches to managing team assessment at an Australian University with a view to informing policy development and assessment design.


The research was conducted using a single exploratory case study approach focussing on the team assessment approach of academics teaching in two colleges at an Australian University. A desktop audit of publicly available assessment policy from 38 Australian universities was conducted alongside a review of relevant college subject guides. The findings of this review framed a subsequent focus group and online survey of academic staff.


Results suggest that staff have adopted highly diverse and idiosyncratic approaches to team assessment and have mixed views about varied approaches to managing and assessing teamwork. Findings identify a need for explicit guidance and professional development on designing, managing and grading team assessments. Institutional limits and criteria should be introduced to ensure a whole-of-course approach to developing teamwork skills and ensure students are not burdened with an excessive number of team assessment tasks in a degree.

Research limitations/implications

The paper reports results from an exploratory case study at a single Australian University. As such, the results are not generalizable.

Practical implications

The findings could inform guidelines, policies or support resources for designing team assessment tasks.


The research explores a challenging area for academics: team assessment, which the research indicates is not currently adequately managed through university policy and procedure. The findings highlight options for universities to consider when developing policies and procedures to manage team assessment. The study also provides recommendations for academics to consider when developing and managing team assessment.



This research was supported by a VU College of Business teaching and learning innovation grant.


Augar, N., Woodley, C.J., Whitefield, D. and Winchester, M. (2016), "Exploring academics’ approaches to managing team assessment", International Journal of Educational Management, Vol. 30 No. 6, pp. 1150-1162.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2016, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Related articles