This is an account of the issues and findings of a project, funded by the Centre for Excellence in Preparing for Academic Practice, which has been enquiring into evaluation of development provision for postgraduate and early career researchers and academics with respect to participant learning and attainment, asking to what extent can assessment of participants be deployed in development events, especially those which do not lead to an award? The fieldwork has focused upon the experiences of participants in a diverse range of development events. The project finds that participating is seen as valuable in its own right for learning, assessment being seen as unnecessary by some, and grading offensive by those evoking a ‘romantic’ narrative. Other participants, however, especially those in development events which are not normally complemented by an assignment task, are largely open variously to assessment that is for learning and of learning. There is a strong indication that the selective integration of tasks into development provision, as means by which the performance and competence of participants may be assessed, would constitute a fruitful investment of resources. The question which constitutes more inclusive practice depends upon how the goals of inclusion would be defined
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