Contributing to Teaching and Learning Enhancement: in Search of Ukrainian Equivalents for Appraisal, Assessment, Evaluation

Keywords: appraisal, assessment, evaluation, excellence in teaching and learning, learning outcomes


The purpose of the article is to scrutinize and specify the semantics of English terms «appraisal», «assessment», «evaluation» and to identify their Ukrainian equivalents capable to adequately convey the meaning of above English words in Ukrainian educational discourse. The relevance of this theme is rooted in the growing interest to teaching and learning in general and, in this context, the facilitation of dialogue on importance of assessment / evaluation in higher education, unfolding over the last decade in European Higher Education Area.

In Ukraine’s higher education, the discussion on the above issues was launched in 2020 within the framework of Ukraine Higher Education Teaching Excellence Programme that is a joint initiative of the British Council in Ukraine and the Institute of Higher Education of the National Academy of the Educational Sciences of Ukraine, in partnership with the Ministry of Higher Education and Science of Ukraine and National Agency for Higher Education Quality Assurance. The discussion has revealed that there is no unity among Ukraine’s higher education community regarding the semantics of two terms «assessment» and «evaluation»; that the meaning of «evaluation» is interpreted rather vaguely and that the Ukrainian language lacks lexemes capable to convey the specifics of the meanings of two English terms.

Three methods – lexico-semantic analysis, discourse analysis and content-analysis – have been applied, which resulted in the following findings:

  • three terms are regularly used in English expert and scholarly discourse to discuss the issues of assessment, evaluation, appraisal. The lexical-semantic analysis of the above terms has not revealed significant differences in their meanings, but contextually all three are used differently and convey different meanings;
  • «assessment» is used to nominate an integral phase of teaching and learning and correlates with measuring learner’s attainment, progress, or achievement of learning outcomes; «evaluation» is used in a much broader context and examines the value of a study programme, quality of teaching or educational environment, success of educational policies etc.;
  • two «agents» are involved in the assessment process: a teacher and a student (learner); and the subject matter that is assessed is either the process of learning or learning outcomes;
  • the number of agents involved in evaluation is much broader: they could be students who are asked to express their opinion of the programme or module; teachers who review the programme that they have developed; external stakeholders invited to express their opinion on the relevance of competences acquired by students for the labour market or their judgement on the quality of education in a certain institution in general;
  • the appraisal is used in connection to measuring HEIs’ staff competences and performance only.

Following the analyses, the conclusion has been made that the absence of a Ukrainian term permitting to convey the meaning of «evaluation» in Ukrainian expert and scholarly discourse considerably restricts the discussion of assessment and evaluation in higher education and education in general on the national and institutional levels. The search for an appropriate Ukrainian equivalent and consent of Ukrainian higher education community to unanimously use a certain lexeme as an equivalent to the English term would significantly advance the discourse and facilitate the promotion and usage of evaluation practices and techniques in national higher education.


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Author Biography

Olena Orzhel , Institute of Higher Education of the National Academy of Educational Sciences

Doctor Habilitated in Public Administration, Associate Professor, Head of the Unit for Policy and Governance in Higher Education


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How to Cite
Orzhel , O. (2020). Contributing to Teaching and Learning Enhancement: in Search of Ukrainian Equivalents for Appraisal, Assessment, Evaluation. International Scientific Journal of Universities and Leadership, (10), 142-154.
Universities of Ukraine: experience and practices