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Accommodating diversity in assessment: A snapshot of practice in 2022

Janet Lee, Rosemary Hipkins

Kei tēnā, kei tēnā, kei tēnā anō, a tōnā ake āhua, tōnā ake mauri, tōnā ake mana.
Each and every one has their own uniqueness, life essence, and presence.

The New Zealand Council for Educational Research (NZCER) was asked to carry out research for the Ministry of Education related to the future of Special Assessment Conditions (SAC) in the context of the National Certificates of Educational Achievement (NCEA).

This report details our findings related to the current application of SAC entitlement within NCEA assessment and provides some short-term recommendations. It highlights areas of concern about the inclusiveness and sustainability of the current SAC model and explores options that could address these areas and provide a basis for new policy direction and solutions in the medium and long term.

Research questions include:

  • How are special assessment conditions currently being used in high-stakes assessment in Aotearoa New Zealand?
  • How are Special Assessment Conditions addressed in other international education environments, including those serving indigenous students?
  • In the context of NCEA, how are RTLBs currently supporting inclusive practice in New Zealand secondary education?
  • Can a standards-based assessment model such as NCEA be made more inclusive? If it can, what kinds of changes could enable this (e.g., changing ways that achievement can be evidenced)?
Year published: 
Publication type: 
Research report
Full text download: 
Rose Hipkins