This paper presents primary school teachers' conceptions of 'assessment for learning' in government schools in Brunei Darussalam. The Ministry of Education in Brunei introduced a 21st century education system (codenamed SPN21) in 2007 and one of the initiatives brought by SPN21 was the implementation of School Based Assessment for Learning (SBAfL). Prior to SBAfL, assessment in primary government schools was highly examination oriented, which placed a great emphasis on 'assessment of learning' rather than 'assessment for learning'. The current study sought to explore teachers' experiences in implementing SBAfL in government primary schools in Brunei. A qualitative approach to research using phenomenographic methodology was applied to provide in-depth insights into the ways in which these teachers applied assessment for learning in their lessons, having been teaching for many years in an education system that was highly examination oriented. Semi-structured in-depth interviews were used as the main data collection instrument. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and analysed to form categories of description depicting the qualitatively different ways in which these teachers experienced assessment for learning (SBAfL). A total of four categories of description emerged from the data analysis, and the findings suggest variations in the ways in which assessment for learning is conceptualised by the teachers, which in turn, may affect the effective implementation of SBAfL in promoting a 21st century education system in Brunei.
Asia and the Pacific