TestReach Blog

Expert Insights into Assessment, Exam Delivery and Computer-based Examinations
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Blue Monday: Cheering up the Office with Random Facts

The “Random Fact of the Day” Blog is back this year and bigger than before with 10 extra facts to make your Blue Monday that bit brighter. Today, Monday the 20th January is "Blue Monday"- aka the most depressing day of the year, and here at TestReach, we decided once again to battle the blues by sharing this blog with you all with even more random facts for you to enjoy and even perhaps share with your own colleagues.

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image of hands working on a laptop doing a remotely invigilated exam

Impact of Online Proctoring AEA-Europe Webinar

The latest Association for Educational Assessment Europe (AEA-Europe) webinar was on the subject of online proctoring and the future of assessment. Many awarding bodies are moving to e-assessment and are adopting new exam delivery methods such as online proctoring. This webinar reports on the range of technologies used to provide online proctoring and what to consider when you’re evaluating different systems.

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Woman at home on laptop in a stress-free environment taking an exam

How Online Assessment Software can Reduce Examination Stress

Most people find taking an examination to be very stressful. This blog looks at some of the issues that increase the pressure around exams, and illustrates some key ways in which online assessment software can reduce the stress and hassle of the examination experience.

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Examining the Experts in Assessment, with Geoff Chapman

We’re delighted to welcome Geoff Chapman as our latest contributor to our popular “Examining the Experts” series. Geoff is an assessment consultant with over 20+ years in international education and he shares some key insights into the world of assessment and technical innovation in this field, and the challenges that face awarding organisations today. You can also learn about the strange ways people adapt their bodies in order to cheat at examinations!

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Online Assessment for Candidate-Centric Exams - The Changing Balance of Power

Traditionally the balance of power has been tipped firmly towards examining bodies and test takers have been very good at obeying the rules when it comes to completing their assessments. But the balance of power is moving towards the candidate at an ever-increasing rate. Read on to learn how online assessment can help deliver a candidate-centric approach to test delivery.

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Examining the Experts in Computer-Based Assessment

Examining the Experts in Computer-Based Assessment, with Teresa Jacobs

The world of examinations and assessment is full of surprises, and this blog post from assessment expert Teresa Jacobs will entertain you with unexpected stories of what can happen to exam scripts, why examinations can be torture, what to do when nervous candidates vomit on their scripts, the transformative impact of computer-based assessment and the weird and wonderful places that end up being test centres!

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Assessment trends

The Five Latest Trends in Assessment and How They Can Transform Your Organisation

The huge advancements in computer-based testing are redefining the possibilities of assessment, particularly in terms of what can be tested, how and when. These advancements mean that there are many more applications for both summative and formative testing, applications that even a couple of years ago would not have been possible. This blog post highlights the 5 key trends that are transforming assessment for organisations today and into the future.

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Blue Monday: Cheering up the Office with Random Facts

The “Random Fact of the Day” is a fun topic for discussion in the TestReach office that has been engaging the team in some light hearted conversation. Today, the 21st January, is otherwise known as ‘Blue Monday’ - aka the most depressing day of the year. So for today’s blog post we thought we would share some of the interesting random facts we’ve learned and discussed at TestReach over the past year, with the hope it makes the day less gloomy for all!

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Student using offline exam delivery on a laptop

Offline Assessment or Offline Exam Delivery… All your questions answered!

Offline assessment technology is vital to awarding bodies who deliver computer-based exams across the world, often in areas of poor internet connectivity. This blog post covers all you need to know about how it works, the benefits of this approach and the factors to consider to use this technology successfully.

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Athens - location of the eATP conference in 2018 where the procurement session was hosted

Best Practice in Procurement of an eAssessment Solution

Are you making the transition to e-assessment? Investigating potential suppliers? This article is essential reading on the topic of e-assessment procurement, and features many valuable and practical tips for comparing vendors. As a review of a session that took place at the e-ATP Conference in Greece this year, it features The Chartered Institute of Procurement & Supply (CIPS) who gave an overview of the activities that added value to their own e-assessment procurement process.

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Man at laptop doing on-screen question authoring

On-Screen Question Authoring for Examinations, with Charlotte Warr

When you are creating and managing question items, there are undoubtedly many benefits to using an on-screen assessment authoring solution. But what is the experience for an individual exam question author? Charlotte Warr, Managing Director at Sarnia Training Limited, who is an experienced question writer, gives us some feedback on her personal experiences of on-screen question authoring.

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Examining the Experts in Assessment, with Matthew White

We’re delighted to welcome Matthew White as our latest contributor to the “Examining the Experts” series. Matthew is an expert in building assessments and managing the quality of assessments on a national scale. Matthew gives some key insights into the cultural restraints of paper-based testing, assessing skills not just knowledge, plagiarism and remote invigilation, not to mention a police raid on a test centre!

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Examining the Experts in Assessment for Awarding Bodies, with Denise Edens

We’ve posed some more difficult questions to our latest expert in assessment, Denise Edens from Edens Education. Read on to hear her thoughtful responses about the challenges that awarding bodies face, recommended changes to GCSEs as well as technical developments in assessment and what it means for Principal Examiners. Denise has supported a number of awarding bodies and training centres in delivering assessment and in developing new qualifications.

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Examination papers piled on desk for marking

Online Marking Software: What are the key benefits of on-screen exam marking tools?

Are you using excel or paper to mark exams? It might be time to investigate new on-screen exam marking tools that can streamline your exam administration. Here we outline five key benefits that examining bodies have realised from the use of online marking software. There is also useful information on making the transition to online marking and an overview of the types of on-screen marking tools available.

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Examining the Experts in Assessment, with Peter Bennett

It’s a tricky question, what is assessment trying to measure and how can this be done differently? Addressing this and many other questions is our most-recent expert blog contributor Peter Bennett. Peter has been involved in the design and development of examinations and competence assessment programmes for more than 20 years. Read on to pick up useful insights into the world of exam design, technology and much more!

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linear loft

To LOFT or not to LOFT, that is the question

Historically, huge effort has been involved in ensuring that the exams associated with any qualification or course are effective and fit for purpose. This typically includes a detailed review of all questions, to not only ensure that they are clear and correct, but also that they adequately represent all parts of the syllabus or learning outcomes on which the user is to be tested.

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Examining the Experts in Assessment, with Paula Goddard

Our latest ‘Examining the Experts’ blog features Paula Goddard, experienced senior examiner, freelance educational writer and Fellow of The Chartered Institute of Educational Assessors. Read on to learn from her experience and knowledge on the world of assessment, exam delivery and exam technology.

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Examining the Experts in Assessment, with Graham Hudson

Our new blog series ‘Examining the Experts’ asks leaders and experts in assessment – practitioners and consultants, authors and solution providers – to share their experience and knowledge on the world of assessment and how exam delivery is changing over time. Today's contributor is Graham Hudson, International Examinations Delivery Practitioner, GA Partnership Ltd.

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Exam Delivery Online – A World of Constant Innovation

For anyone working in the world of exams, it is clear that online assessment gives awarding bodies a great opportunity to streamline and simplify their assessment processes. Who wouldn’t want to ditch paper-based exam sheets and eradicate the need to move everything manually from candidate to marker to administrator in a secure manner?

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Man hands with ipad showing graphs measuring student exam data

What student exam data should we measure?

With more and more processes and systems being computerised, there is the potential to collect a lot more data as we "swipe" into buildings and login to applications. Universities and associations are becoming increasingly interested in this broader range of student data, as opposed to just focusing on academic results.

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Exam Delivery Tools to Optimise Corporate Certification Programmes – A "martini" Approach?

In an increasingly litigious society, coupled with growing levels of competition, many corporations are introducing formal certification programmes for their employees and partners. This not only sets the standard that has to be achieved, but it also helps to ensure that employees operate in a compliant manner, in line with external regulations or company rules.

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Two technical apprenticeship students being taught by older man

Apprenticeship Delivery and Assessment – Some Recent Views

While many of the UK government’s apprenticeship reforms are being welcomed, these changes are altering the vocational landscape in ways that are not yet predictable and there is uncertainty around how assessments will be run and funded. This was very apparent from presentations on the subject given at a recent Assessment Tomorrow conference, which TestReach was pleased to sponsor.

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Measuring tape

Proving the Value of Training

Training is an expensive business, not just when you consider the hard costs of venues, trainers, printing material and fees to develop e-learning content, but also in terms of the investment in time, both by the learners and training administration staff. With this backdrop, all organisations are keen to ensure that the training they provide is as effective as it can be, and that the significant costs involved are justified.

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Logo for EAssessment Awards

Remote Invigilation Features At E Assessment Conference And Awards

TestReach is delighted to be attending and sponsoring the 15th annual international e-Assessment Question conference in America Square Conference Centre in London on 22nd and 23rd March. The conference is focussed on the practical issues of commissioning, implementing and delivering e-Assessment solutions.

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A Big Bang Approach To Exams Or Online Invigilation?

It’s coming to that time of year again, when school and university students remove themselves from daily life, bury their heads in books and try to cram everything into the (somewhat) small few inches between their ears. This big bang approach to exams is dreaded by students and examining bodies alike, but can remote invigilation offer a better alternative?

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Man writing on paper doing an exam

The Traditional Exam Hall – Are Candidates At A Disadvantage?

Welcome to the new TestReach blog series! This is the start of what will be a succession of thought-provoking articles and news about the world of online assessment, examinations and technology. To kick start things, this inaugural blog post is going to tackle the thorny question of whether the traditional exam hall approach is placing candidates at a disadvantage.

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