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3 Reasons Why Universities Should Consider Digitization for a Seamless Examination Process

3 Reasons Why Universities Should for Consider Digitization a Seamless Examination Process

3 Reasons Why Universities Should Consider Digitization for a Seamless Examination Process

Date: 02/01/2019 | Posted by: MeritTrac | Category: General


Back in 2015, Thiruvalluvar University automated its entire examination system to conduct its final semester exams. Students’ marks were uploaded and scanned, for the first time in the university’s history. A total of 1,24,070 students of 110 affiliated colleges of the university appeared for the examinations. The university went a step further and digitized other processes, including admissions, fee payment, etc. to do away with paper and ‘go green’. Many such examples have mushroomed in the last few years where universities have attempted to improve their examination process through digitization. According to the Gartner Group’s 2015 Hype Cycle for Education, digital assessment is on the rise and is expected to speed up in the next five to 10 years.
So how does digitization really help universities in terms of enhancing their examination process? Here are 3 ways in which it streamlines the process.

1. Plan exams and evaluate paper scripts more efficiently

Planning and conducting large scale exams with a growing volume of paper scripts is a massive challenge. Organizing exams, ensuring security and evaluating them with credibility, is a labor-intensive, time consuming and error-prone process. Delays in evaluation turnaround time and increased costs are other roadblocks that concern testing bodies. Unsurprisingly, there is growing push to digitize pen and paper answer scripts and mark them online to improve the quality as well as speed of marking. The added advantage: testing organizations are not limited to local evaluators. They can tap into a geographically distributed pool for rapid turnaround even during peak periods. Norway, with its Norwegian research and education network UNINETT coordinated a large national digitization project to enhance user friendliness and ensure better use of resources. Back home, leading educational institutions such as Mumbai University, Manipal University and Kerala Technical University have digitized their examination process to optimize results.

2. Reduce exam vulnerabilities

The Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) exam paper leak was one of the biggest scams faced by the board. While the students were left in great dismay, a bigger question was raised around the credibility and competency of the education system of the country. Experts from the Indian education sector have suggested that it was time to embrace and implement digitization not only in exams, but even in elementary education. CBSE has moved ahead and partnered with Microsoft to create digitally encrypted question papers for standard X and XII examinations. The partnership aims to enhance data security and seamless distribution of exam papers. The exam process is automated and secured with encryption, two-factor authentication and access to download question papers only 30-minutes prior to the exam. Microsoft’s integrated software allows the Examination Controller to track the entire process. The success of the solution is paving the way for other educational institutes and testing bodies to leverage technology intervention in the end-to-end examination process.

3. Provide easy student access

Online grading allows examination bodies to host remote exams remotely and more efficiently. Enabling access to students at remote locations and ensuring exam integrity in far flung locations is a big bottleneck in the evaluation process in a large country such as India. Standford University’s paper makes the case for exam digitization and online grading. The paper outlines the many benefits of conducting online exams including easy student access and online evaluation of papers. It recommends methods that allow students to submit their exam papers for error-free evaluation and re-evaluation without the need for their physical presence.
The country’s education system has seen it all - from mundane challenges such as high costs and risk of human error to major disasters such as large scale examination leaks. It is time to turn towards digitization to find solutions that are already hinting towards growth at the global level. Innovative educational institutions and testing bodies can break new ground using emerging technologies to digitize the examination process and realize better outcomes in the process.

Sources:

  • Thehindu.com
  • Inthefieldstories.net
  • Theweek.in
  • Economictimes.indiatimes.com
  • Entrepreneur.com
  • Microsoft.com
  • CVGL.Stanford.edu