Students leaving 'dark ages' for cyberspace

An online NCEA level one maths test schools will be rolled out at 20 schools in Sept. Photo / Thinkstock
An online NCEA level one maths test schools will be rolled out at 20 schools in Sept. Photo / Thinkstock

New Zealand students will move out of "the dark ages" and complete experimental NCEA assessments online this year.

The Qualifications Authority will test an online NCEA level one mathematics test at 20 schools in September.

Its deputy chief executive, Richard Thornton, said the pilot was an online version of an assessment that took place during the school year.

"It will be used as a practice assessment for students in preparation for the common assessment task itself, which will still be paper-based.

The pilot will not count towards students' NCEA.

Mr Thornton said the trial was being run with the company Education Perfect.

It was one of several projects being undertaken by NZQA to test the practicality of moving exams and assessments online.

The authority wants to eventually convert end-of-year NCEA secondary school exams to a test-as-you-learn online format.

"Feedback from the students and teachers as to the format of the assessment will also inform any future work/development on digital assessments," Mr Thornton said.

NZQA chief executive Karen Poutasi has previously told the Herald that her staff were watching developments in online assessment at the university level.

She said the NCEA exam system involved two million pieces of paper moving round the country.

It encouraged online learning but sent students "back to the Dark Ages" to hand-write exam papers.

- NZ Herald

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