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Title:A Dialectical Perspective on Evaluation as Evolution: A Critical View of Assessment in Icelandic Schools
Author(s):Proppe, Olafur Johann
Department / Program:Education
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Education, Educational Psychology
Abstract:This dissertation starts out as a theoretical exploration in order to look for a fruitful approach to escape the frequently-noted paradox of quantitative and qualitative perspectives in educational evaluation. By using certain definitions and categorizations, quantitative, qualitative, and dialectical evaluations are found to be different in very important ways. "Quantitative" is not only used as relating to numbers or numerical systems, but more generally as relating to quantity, i.e., that which is measurable or numerable. Therefore, in quantitative evaluation, a definition of a situation is taken for granted and particulars selected from among the objects created by this definition. "Qualitative" is used as relating to distinctive traits, attributes or meanings which change the definitions of what is observed as quantity. Such definitions are always a matter of interpretation.
External evaluations, whether quantitative or qualitative, can produce pathological situations, i.e., fixated, hurtful situations--often paradoxes which develop into vicious circles. Such situations are not only dangerous but repressive. They tend to preclude other important problem solving efforts and hinder a fruitful exchange.
The dialectical paradigm is introduced as a possible synthesis of quantitative and qualitative evaluations. Evaluation is defined as the process of discovering the nature and worth of something, through which we learn about ourselves and our relationship to others and to the world at large. Dialectical evaluation is seen as a set of activities which help the participants to perceive, understand, and act upon--with increasing self-awareness, authenticity, and responsibility--process events that occur in their interaction with their environment. The theoretical base for dialectical evaluation is explored in the humanities, social, and physical sciences.
Finally, the theoretical framework of dialectical evaluation is used in order to evaluate the assessment procedures within the Icelandic school system; phenomena observed to be not only technical, but fundamentally pedagogical, historical, socio-political, and cultural as well.
Issue Date:1983
Description:418 p.
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1983.
Other Identifier(s):(UMI)AAI8410027
Date Available in IDEALS:2014-12-15
Date Deposited:1983

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