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Off the mark: Repetitive marking undermines essay evaluations due to boredom

Erturk, Sinan and Van Tilburg, Wijnand and Igou, Eric (2022) 'Off the mark: Repetitive marking undermines essay evaluations due to boredom.' Motivation and Emotion, 46 (2). pp. 264-275. ISSN 0146-7239 (In Press)

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Essay-style assessment is widespread in education. Nonetheless, research shows that this tool can suffer from low reliability and validity. We attribute this problem partly to the boredom that marking multiple essays causes. Specifically, we propose that boredom in markers is associated with systematically lower marks on essays. To test this, we asked participants (N = 100) with an undergraduate degree to mark essays. The majority of these participants had at least some experience with marking. After marking each essay, participants indicated how bored they were. We found an increase in boredom over time and that higher boredom was associated with lower marks. Furthermore, offering a marking rubric did not prevent this problematic impact of boredom. These findings have implications for the validity of essays as an assessment tool and raise concerns about repetitive marking practices in general.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Boredom; Negativity bias; Assessments; Marking; Education; Emotion
Divisions: Faculty of Science and Health
Faculty of Science and Health > Psychology, Department of
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 11 Feb 2022 20:32
Last Modified: 25 Mar 2022 20:34

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