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testing students using ICT

Dan Lyndon

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There was an article in the Guardian yesterday that suggested that students in the future could be sitting exams online:


This has been tested in geography, physics, biology and chemistry at 20 schools and has been received positively by the department for education. QCA has even said that students have been writing into them and 'demanding the right to be tested online'! It is suggested that this system will help overcome the major shortage in exam markers as many of the questions will be multiple choice / 'drag and drop' and can be marked by the computer.

As a History teacher I struggle to see how the kind of assessments that are required to make an effective and critical historian can be transferred onto the computer for a short test - I can see the advantage of using ICT for a longer piece of assessment eg research and production of an extended piece eg a website / some DTP quality work - if you look at some of the work carried out by the International School at Toulouse you can see the kind of excellent assessment that is carried out: http://www.intst.net/humanities/y9/term1/i...ebate/index.htm

What do other teachers think about this proposal?

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Firstly I share your concern about the inappropriate nature of computer testing for History, and indeed most other subjects requiring evaluation, critical and reflective thinking.

Secondly I am alarmed that my only other major source of income (exam marking) could be taken from me ;)

No more holidays in the Caribbean I guess?

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