Practices, Challenges and Implications of Teaching and Assessment of Cognitive Skills in Higher Education

malik Ghulam Bhehlol, Wasyl Cajkler


The key research questions of the study were to check understanding,
practices and challenges in teaching and assessment of higher order
thinking skills to students enrolled in pre-service teacher education
program. Sequential mixed method design was applied to collect
quantitative and qualitative data with the help of structured questionnaire
scale and semi-structured interview. Descriptive statistics were applied
by calculating percentages and means; and thematic analysis was carried
out by open coding, axial coding, analytical coding and selective coding.
Quantitative and qualitative data was integrated to draw findings and
conclusions of the study. The major conclusions of the study are that
faculty in UK conceptualise Cognitive Skills (CS) as processing
information, constructing understanding, application of knowledge,
problem solving and thinking activity. They also incorporate CSs in
teaching problem solving and reflective learning practices in which
learners retrieve, generate, organise, and validate information. They
assess CSs by open book examination, moderation of assignments,
matching and comparing against Teacher Education Standards, and also
provide effective feedback. However, faculty do not focus on
‘construction of theory’ and linking theory to practice in teaching and

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