Computer-aided assessment is a means by which to assess many students quickly and
efficiently. Its popularity as a tool for assessing mathematics increased substantially in
the first decade of this millennium as computing and the Internet became more widely
available, and as cohort sizes grew.
This research sought to evaluate one such system that had been used at a higher education
institution for over ten years. However, the literature does not offer a clear or detailed
framework from which to perform an evaluation of this system.
Using cultural-historical activity theory, and cues from assessment literature, this research
presents a model for effective assessment. It provides a framework for judging
where an assessment is effective for individuals using the assessment and where it ceases
to be effective.
Case study analyses helped to identify where the assessment tool was no longer effective.
It identified that students struggled to construct new goals after the summative phase
of assessment. It also explained how and why the lecturers had diverse practices.
A Thesis submitted in fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Philosophy.