Edited by Pierre Benckendorff and Anita Zehrer
Chapter 3: The case for a return to the prevalence of examinations in student evaluation
The use of written examinations in student evaluation has decreased over time, and most instructors have chosen other means of evaluation despite problems with group work, plagiarism and academic misconduct. Examinations have been shown to be an effective evaluative tool and motivate students to do well. The controlled environment provided by the examination process makes cheating more difficult and enhances the integrity of the evaluation system. Gaps between examination questions, course materials and classroom teaching undermine learning and reduce examination validity. Instructors can do many things to reduce examinations stress, increase the validity of examinations and improve students’ satisfaction with the examination itself. Two-stage, collaborative examinations show promising results for both student evaluation and enhanced learning. The positive attributes of examinations as an evaluation tool are further supported by the prevalence of academic misconduct, plagiarism and cheating found in other means of evaluation.
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