The Reliability of Markers

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This article examines the reliability of markers and questions the practice of double marking versus single marking of student essays. Three investigations were carried out and analysed, one with the use of descriptive statistics and two with inferential statistics. All three investigations involved two staff members assessing student essays independently and using the same general marking criteria. In addition, the first investigation used specific marking criteria drawn up by the two staff prior to marking. The results of the three investigations were that investigation one had a very high correlation and investigations two and three a high correlation. All three results showed that markers had a high degree of reliability. In addition, the higher correlations found in investigation one strongly supported the use of specific marking criteria drawn up prior to marking as a recommended assessment procedure to follow.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: February 1, 1998

More about this publication?
  • The British Journal of Occupational Therapy (BJOT) is the official journal of the College of Occupational Therapists. Its purpose is to publish articles relevant to theory, practice, research, education and management in occupational therapy internationally.

    BJOT publishes research articles, critical reviews, practice analyses, opinion pieces, editorials, letters to the editor, book reviews and an annual index. Please refer to the author's guide at

    Submissions can be made at

    The 2013 Impact Factor for The British Journal of Occupational Therapy is 0.897.

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