Jamie Morton

Jamie Morton is science reporter at the NZ Herald.

Cellphone becomes ally in kids' exam preparation

A Kiwi education company has developed a mobile-ready application to help high school students swot for NCEA exams. Photo / Supplied
A Kiwi education company has developed a mobile-ready application to help high school students swot for NCEA exams. Photo / Supplied

Swotting for NCEA exams has been made easier with the very device parents and teachers hold as the enemy of study - teenagers' cellphones.

Otago-based education company NCEA Eagle has produced a new mobile-ready application to help students revise or fine-tune answers before their exams.

Its chief executive, Rakesh Pandey, combined his knowledge of study techniques and feedback from teachers on where students were going wrong to develop NCEA Eagle.

Mr Pandey said that globally, the application was without comparison.

More than 4000 had now been distributed across the country.

"NCEA papers are now being graded according to how in-depth the answers are," Mr Pandey said.

"Students often know the knowledge but are unable to identify the correct terminology, or make small errors in their explanations.

"These errors or omissions decrease their grades from Excellence to Merit or even Not Achieved."

The application allowed them to look at the types of questions likely to turn up and to identify what they know and what they need to work on.

"We're backing up the study they're doing with top questions and tracking tools so they know where their study is at, and we're using the technology they know - mobiles and PCs - so they can study anywhere."

The company has partnered with charity KidsCan to donate $5 from each online sale.

Getting ready to tackle NCEA

Study tips for students
*Get to know what is required to achieve each standard and make sure you have up-to-date notes from classes. There are resource pages for all subjects on the NZQA website.

*Choose a quiet, organised and well-lit space to study for NCEA exams and set regular routines and study goals.

*Make sure that in addition to study you take regular breaks, eat well, get fresh air, stay in touch with friends and study groups, and get plenty of sleep - especially the night before exams.

*Get an exam timetable - they can be downloaded and printed from the NZQA website. You should try to get to exams at least 20 minutes before they begin so you can relax and make last-minute preparations. Allow plenty of time to get there, know what the exam room rules are at your school, and plan for what you might do if something unforeseen happens.Tips for parentsMake sure you know what exams your children are sitting, and when, so that you can support them beforehand and talk to them about how they went afterwards.

*Double-check that you and your child know how they are going to get to their exams and what the exam room rules are.

*Ensure your child is sleeping well, taking regular breaks, eating well, getting fresh air and staying in touch with peers.

*Speak to teachers - your child's teachers know what is happening at school and how your child is progressing. Ask for guidance - teachers know how NCEA works and understand it well.

Source: NZQA

- NZ Herald

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