NAPLANning to go Online

Week 4 with one assignment down.

This week can be considered guilty of killing semester excitement. The week where the initial plans of being SUPER organised begin to slip from me. I start questioning whether I REALLY need to attend the early class or whether I can just watch the online version once I have had my beauty sleep. Fortunately for my grades, I am continuing to push through – I mean, we only have a couple of weeks until the Easter Break (woo!). So, since I DID in fact attend my classes this week, I came to learn of a very exciting ICT integration into our current schooling system – NAPLAN Online!

Upon its first mention within our lecture, I was a skeptic as to its effectiveness. Was it just going to be yet another thing we unnecessarily integrate to online? The exact same as the paper version, but just a tool to point out which schools lacked the same resources as their counterparts? But upon further research, it seems I may be wrong (rare, but it happens I guess).

Since its introduction in 2008, NAPLAN has been the (dreaded) test that is highly featured on school calendars. The event that was created to determine the levels of numeracy and literacy in schools, and what schools all aspire to be great at. The test that ‘determines’ the data to reflect how good the school and its staff are. For my household and I’m sure many others, the awful test that would ‘determine’ how rubbish you were – despite this not being the case. In saying this, perhaps this new version is the answer to at least some of the issues!

The National Assessment Program (2017) has noted benefits as;

  • Better assessment
    • Greater precision of results as it uses an adaptive design, in which the test automatically adapts to a student’s performance. It asks questions that match the students’ achievement level, allowing them to demonstrate their knowledge on a broader assessment scope.
  • Faster turnaround of results
    • Delivery of assessments online significantly reduces the time it takes to provide feedback to key stakeholders. Consequently, teachers can respond more quickly to learning needs.
  • More engaging
    • Research conducted on online assessment by ACARA  has highlighted that students have engaged well with electronic tests.

The main difference that I find exceptional about the transition to an online platform is the ability to tailor to an individual. This will effectively assist in meeting the differentiation needs education strives for, however lacks in standardised testing. Therefore, should the system work, NAPLAN Online will be a fantastic step towards catering to diverse student bodies.

For more information regarding NAPLAN Online visit: http://www.nap.edu.au/online-assessment 

Miss Ingram – Signing out

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