Citizenship Education in Europe: Formative Assessment

Starting in December 2021, we are embarking on another challenging journey alongside colleagues from Belgium, Norway, Portugal, Italy, Czechia and Slovenia. Partly reaffirming a previous successful partnership, we are now in a more academic company attempting to find a solution to support Citizenship Education (CE) in partner countries with an appropriate and well-targeted assessment toolbox. The principal challenge for a common approach in CE lies in the wildly varying curriculum for the subject, the high variety of curriculum models – from unique subject-centred to extremely de-centralised – and the pressure on teachers to work with emerging subject matter, coordinate with a large number of colleagues, and utilise existing assessment methods for a novel and quickly evolving subject matter.

In most cases, the national education systems have made the provisions for summative assessment (the assessment which typically takes place at the end of a module and which is marked and becomes part of a student’s markbook), while formative assessment (the ongoing assessment which tells teachers how well they – and their students – are doing along the course of their teaching) is left to the discretion of individual educators. In a 3-year project led by the City of Antwerpen’s School System Administrators (AGSO), we will be seeking to identify those formative assessment methods which are in use or which could be adjusted for use with CE. The ALiCE project is co-funded by the Erasmus+ programme of the EU.