n South African Journal of Higher Education - A theoretical framework for measuring the quality of student learning in outcomes-based education : perspectives on higher education

Volume 18, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1011-3487



The most important principles of outcomes-based education (OBE) is that planning, teaching and assessment should focus on helping learners to achieve significant outcomes to high standards. This cannot be achieved without having suitable ways to describe desired learning outcomes and the quality of students' demonstrations of learning. This article outlines a systematic approach to defining outcomes and describing the relationship between learners' responses to assessment items and their levels of understanding. The approach is based on the Structure of the Observed Learning Outcome (SOLO) taxonomy with multimodal functioning ± a means of analysing learner understanding that is based on modes of thinking, forms of knowledge and ways of structuring knowledge.

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