Journal article

Who's marking my essay? The assessment of non-native-speaker and native-speaker undergraduate essays in an Australian higher education context

Sally Roisin O'Hagan, Gillian Wigglesworth

Studies in Higher Education | ROUTLEDGE JOURNALS, TAYLOR & FRANCIS LTD | Published : 2015


Assessment is a crucial factor in higher education where marks gained can determine future study and career options. Increasing student numbers, and an increasing proportion of international students, raises concerns regarding marking practices, and whether the same criteria are used to mark both native-speaker (NS) and non-native-speaker (NNS) essays. This paper examines the essays of five native and five non-native speakers written in English for the same undergraduate subject. The essays were marked by 10 experienced assessors. Results reveal distinct differences in the approaches taken by the assessors resulting in, in some cases, the same NS essay being awarded every grade level from th..

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