Friday, May 18, 2012

Setting exam papers

Setting exam papers is a challenge, especially when time is short. 

Here are some suggestions:

Firstly do not tell your learners how you are setting/getting your papers as it is actually not their business.

Set your paper on work you have done, not work you should have done.

Get reputable old exam papers from, for example, Study Opportunities, the Department of Education, etc. Take questions out of a mix of them and then adapt the theme to one common theme. If learners have seen and worked through old exam papers, some of which you have chosen in your mix, well so be it. They learned by doing the old papers which is not wrong.

Create a teacher group and set the papers together in an afternoon, all together. Keep the names of the participants in the group private so that if one teacher's learners write before another, there can be no leakages. Decide on a topic before the meeting and who will be creating the questions using particular applications and which features. Bring samples of the pre developed questions to the group meeting for putting the paper together.

Create a teacher group and plan who is going to set a particular paper during the course of the year, and divide the work load up. If one of the group does not fulfil his/her obligation, never share with them ever again, nothing!

Buy a new paper from a reputable source such as Study Opportunities if they set them that year.

Start your year with an idea or theme for an exam paper and develop it during the year. I have created some great papers when I have had time to develop them.

If you get a paper from a source, personalise it with your own header/footer and title page.

When your paper is ready, do it yourself a number of times ironing out hiccups so that when the learners get it, it is problem free.

Mark the work yourself before the time, to check your memo.

When working on a 'funny' network, do an old paper with your learners in the laboratory where they are going to work, just checking that all the required features are functioning.

There is more to life than setting exam papers. Do it smartly and save time so that you can have a life!

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