Assessment beyond Performance: Phenomenography in Educational Evaluation

Marina Micari, Gregory Light, Susanna C Calkins, Bernhard Streitwieser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

27 Scopus citations


Increasing calls for accountability in education have promoted improvements in quantitative evaluation approaches that measure student performance; however, this has often been to the detriment of qualitative approaches, reducing the richness of educational evaluation as an enterprise. In this article the authors assert that it is not merely performance but also how learners think and how their thinking changes that we should be measuring in educational program evaluation. They describe a mixed-methods evaluation model based on the qualitative method phenomenography that can be used to evaluate how learners think in multiple contexts, from skills training to employee development to higher education, and how their thinking may change over time. They then describe two evaluation studies making use of this approach and provide suggestions for evaluators interested in using the phenomenographic model. (Contains 2 tables and 2 figures.)
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)458-476
Number of pages19
JournalAmerican Journal of Evaluation
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2007

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