B plus or A minus? Assessment in the Creative Disciplines

Students gathered near display

09 Feb 2018

9.30am to 4.30pm

What are the challenges, nuances and opportunities within assessment in the creative disciplines?

During this event we will explore questions such as:

  • How do we actively engage students in assessment processes?
  • How can crits support student learning?
  • What practices do we apply to evaluate and critique personally motivated coursework?
  • How do we ensure that assessment is an integral part of the learning process?


Who should attend?
Anyone with an interest in Assessment in the Creative Disciplines in a Higher Educational setting. 

This event is free.  Lunch is included.

Please book a place using the form below.

The programme of speakers and workshop activities will be confirmed shortly.  

09.30 - 10.00       Registration
10.00 - 11.30  Welcome & Introduction                                                                    
'Taking a closer look: challenges, nuances and opportunities within assessment in the creative disciplines'                                        
Panel Discussion, Moderator: Dr Silke Lange                           
Participants: Dr Gwyneth Hughes, Martin Newth, Prof Trudie Roberts, Tracey Waller.
11.30 - 11.45Coffee break
11.45 - 12.45'Cycle of assessment in creative practice: workshop exploring alternative perspectives on assessment, peer to peer feedback and reflection.'
Pras Gunasekera, Claire Robertson, Henrietta Ross
12.45 - 1.45Lunch
1.45 - 2.40‘Situating the artist-student within interpretation: Assessment in the creative arts’
Keynote: Dr. Dina Belluigi
2.45 - 4.15‘Peer assessment live: collective approach to formative feedback’
Participatory session
Kira Salter, UAL staff and students
4.15 - 4.30 Reflection, Summary and close   


Dr Dina Belluigi has taught fine art studio practice and continues to grapple with ‘being’ an artist. Her research is focused on the higher education context and adult education, and grapples with the question of authorship, interpretation and issues of agency in the assessment of student learning and the evaluation of academic staff. Dina recently joined Queen's University Belfast as coordinator of a portfolio of international programmes in Higher Education Studies, before which she was a Senior Lecturer at Centre for Higher Education Research, Teaching and Learning (CHERTL) at the university currently known as Rhodes, in South Africa. As such, she is informed by a critical Higher Education Studies background, a field which developed as a way to catalyse substantive transformation of higher education institutions in contexts of inequality. Her PhD thesis was entitled 'The problem of authorship : considering the significance of interpretative approaches on the conditions for creativity in undergraduate fine art studio practice' at Kingston University.

Pras Gunasekera is a design researcher and strategist. After graduating from MA Industrial Design, he co founded Bidean, a more than profit enterprise in design and mental health and subsequently spent 18 months co-setting up a design studio at HMP Thameside to co-deliver Makeright, a design thinking for prison industries course. He is currently employed as the Contextual Studies Leader on the BA (Hons) Product Design programme at Central Saint Martins, where he is also a Research Associate with the Design Against Crime Research Centre. In 2017, he was awarded a fellowship from the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust to use design research methods to understand prison resettlement opportunities in key European countries.

Dr Gwyneth Hughes is Reader in Higher Education at the UCL Institute of Education (IOE), University College London where she leads and teachers on Masters programmes in higher education and supervises doctoral students. At UCL IOE she led a three-year JISC funded research project: Assessment Careers: learning pathways through assessment. As a recent UCL Connected Curriculum fellow, she has worked on evaluating different approaches to capturing learning gain across programmes. She also a consultant for an online Postgraduate Certificate in Learning and Teaching for the University of London International Programmes. She has published widely on learning and teaching in Higher Education and her book Ipsative Assessment: Motivation through marking progress was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2014 and an edited collection:  Ipsative Assessment and Personal Learning Gain: case studies from global practitioners was published in 2017. Both these publications demonstrate a commitment to assessment for social justice and equity.

Dr Silke Lange is an educator, researcher and artist. She is Associate Dean of Learning, Teaching and Enhancement at Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London, UK. She is an advocate for staff and students to co-create curricula and develop educational models which provide fora for students to explore collaborative working practices across disciplines within the arts and the creative industries. This form of co-creation is one of her research interests, along with the creative process, collective learning, interdisciplinarity and learning environments. She received her Doctorate in Education from the Institute of Education, University College London, UK. More here: www.silkelange.com. @ComoSilke

Martin Newth is an artist and Programme Director of Fine Art at Chelsea College of Arts. He studied at Newcastle University and the Slade School of Art. Primarily using photography, but also through video and installation, Martin Newth explores and emphasises the processes and apparatus by which works are made and the material properties of photography.

Professor Trudie Roberts is Director of Medical Education (University of Leeds). Professor Roberts is responsible for leadership and scholarship in medical education in the University of Leeds and internationally with the Association for the Study of Medical Education in Europe. She graduated from Manchester with a degree in Medicine and a BSc in Anatomy, and undertook her early medical training in Manchester as well as research in Manchester and the Karolinska Institute in Sweden. In 2000 she was appointed Professor of Medical Education at the University of Leeds and was awarded a National Teaching Fellowship in 2006. In 2009 she was appointed Director of the Leeds Institute of Medical Education. Professor Roberts was a council member of the General Medical Council from 2009 until 2012 and Chair of the Association for the Study of Medical Education until July 2013. She was a council member and Censor for the Royal College of Physicians of London until 2015. In September 2013 she took over as President of the Association for Medical Education in Europe. Professor Roberts was awarded the 2017 Asia Pacific Conference MILES Award for her contributions to medical education and academic medicine. Professor Roberts’ main research interests and expertise are in the areas of assessment of competence, professionalism, and transitions in training and education.

Claire Robertson is Pathway Leader on the BA (Hons) Fashion Communication with Promotion course at Central St Martins. Claire has photographed the work of leading and visionary fashion designers and her backstage photography has been published in a variety of media. Her educational research is concerned with the creative process, and collaborative and inter-disciplinary learning.


Henrietta Ross is a lecturer on the Post-graduate Diploma and Certificate courses in Design for Visual Communication at London College of Communication (LCC). She is also engaged in professional practice as a graphic designer at Soapbox – a studio which specialises in design for organisations operating in the fields of policy, advocacy and research. Henrietta holds an MA in Contemporary Typographic Media from LCC as well as a BA in Social and Cultural Studies from the University of Nottingham.

Kira Salter is Stage 2 Leader and Acting Route and Subject Leader: Design & Interaction (Stage 1 & 2), on the BA Graphic Design at CSM.  Kira worked as a designer for a number of design studios gaining experience across a broad spectrum of design fields producing brand and identity implementation, interface design and publications across both print and digital media. As a freelance designer she had a number of clients within the charity sector including medical, human-rights and legal aid.  Kira is a fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA), and has taught on the BA (Hons) Graphic Design Programme since 2003, working with students across all stages of the programme including BA and MA.

Tracey Waller has an MA in Graphic Design from the Royal College of Art and over 14 years’ experience of working as a motion graphic designer. Her practice has included producing title sequences for BAFTA award-winning dramas,film titles, broadcast graphics and typography for commercials.Tracey is a joint founder with Dr Sheena Calvert of “Interpolate” which is a physical and conceptual platform for a studio-based interrogation of the current state of typography and its related fields. Tracey is also a UAL Teaching Scholar. Her research project “Metassessment” is exploring staff and student experience of assessment. She is currently writing a paper called “I hated assessment, I get why we did it, yeah, I quite liked it really” As part of this research Tracey has delivered papers & workshops at national teaching and learning conferences in art & design. 

This event is part of a series hosted by University of the Arts London, exploring key issues in art and design teaching and learning in higher education.   
Each event includes leading speakers sharing current thinking in creative education and is designed to be interactive: delegates will have opportunities to engage in activities to support networking and engagement. 

For more information about Teaching and Learning at UAL visit the Exchange website.  To subscribe to our mailing list for more details about these and other events, please email teachingexchange@arts.ac.uk, or follow us on Twitter @UALTLE.