What are the benefits of online assessments? Would it be worth it to invest in online test software for your school? How would an online exam portal benefit school administrators, teachers, students, and parents?
Let’s find out the answers to these questions and more in this short read.
What Are Online Assessments?
An assessment is an evaluation of someone’s skill, knowledge, ability, characteristic, or behavior. Technically, we can define an online assessment as an online evaluation of a person’s competencies.
Online assessments are also known as computer-based exams. They are conducted using software systems called exam portals. And, in school settings, online exam portals are usually part of more comprehensive school management software systems.
Teachers and test authors use exam portals to create tests. Online exam portals allow different types of tests. Definition, evaluation, matching type, fill-in-the-blank, true/false, and multiple-choice are some examples.
Some school management software systems can automatically import student data for use in online exam portals. Meanwhile, other exam portals require students or teachers to create their own student profiles.
After making the tests and student profiles, teachers and test administrators will schedule students for examinations. Schedules and other exam settings will define who can take which tests and when. Students may access online tests on laptops, desktops, tablets, and phones, depending on the exam portal itself or the test administrator’s preferences.
The 8 Benefits of Online Assessments
There are so many online exam portals in the market. And, while there are free online test portals, you’ll find soon enough that it’s the paid ones that’ll provide you with features the school really needs.
GoSchooler, an all-in-one school management software, offers several online exam premium features that will efficiently address your school’s needs.
Why should you invest in online assessment systems? Here are the top 8 benefits of online assessments that might just convince you to shell out:
1. Good training for students
Distance and online learning have been the new normal for the past year. Students, teachers, and basically the whole education system have already started to adjust to this new norm. And, to say that students are used to online exams by now is an understatement.
Computers, tablets, mobile phones, and software applications are now parts of a student’s education, as much as pen and paper did in the past.
Since we’re in the information era, it’s good training for students to learn how to navigate and get used to computers. Computer literacy is something you’d want all your students to have. After all, most jobs nowadays require some level of computer knowledge.
2. Less legwork for teachers
If you’ve been using an online exam portal, you’d probably grunt at the idea of conducting a pen and paper test now. Pen and paper tests can be so unbelievably stressful.
As a teacher, you may have to print out multiple copies of multiple-paged test questionnaires. If you’re making numerous test sets, you multiply the amount of work too. Then there’s the stress of grading, safekeeping, and recording each individual test after your students are done with their exams.
Online assessment tools can help lighten the load when it comes to test management.
3. Quicker test results, reports, and analysis
As a test manager, you can allow test-takers to see their results immediately after taking an objective exam. This has several benefits to both you and your students.
For one, your students won’t need to wait for several days before they know the results. Since they already know how they fared in the test, students will know what grades they can expect. Students may ask for projects or other tasks for extra credit.
As a teacher, you won’t need to spend the following evenings manually grading exam papers. You can get test reports and analysis within minutes of the exam conclusion and see who needs your help or deserves some commendation.
Parents may be notified of exam results and academic performances. Not only are they aware of how their kids are doing in school, but they also get an idea of how they’re being graded.
4. Automated test creation
Have you ever tried to make a test and draw a blank? With everything going on in every single one of your classes, it’s understandable for you to sometimes need a bit of help in authoring exams. Automated test creation using question templates and question banks is one of the most helpful benefits of online assessments for teachers.
Different tests offer different ways of evaluating a student’s knowledge and capabilities. And, test templates can be helpful when deciding what type of test to administer. You can use question banks to create or edit questions from a vast collection of questions on many subjects.
5. Collaborative test creation
Are you having problems creating a test but don’t want to use an automated test tool? How about getting some help from your fellow educators?
Collaborative test authoring can help make sure test questions are appropriate and related to your subject, your lessons, and your students’ grade levels. Questions will have to be approved before being used in the final version of the test.
More comprehensive school management systems have more comprehensive exam portal features. Make sure you invest in a system that’s aligned with the school’s needs and goals.
6. Flexibility for test authors and test-takers
You can create, administer, and proctor online exams remotely. In the same sense, your students can take their exams from anywhere they want as long as they have a device that can access the exam.
Untimed and resume-able online exams that can be answered from whatever smart device are heaven-sent for many students. Untimed exams are excellent because they don’t require fast and stable internet connections. Your students already have exams to stress about. The last thing that they’d need is to worry about power interruptions and laggy network connections.
7. Security and anti-cheating features
If you’re worried about cheating, most online exam portals already come equipped with tools that can detect suspicious exam activities. Anti-cheating technologies ensure the integrity of online exams.
Some test portals might disable navigation controls, so students can’t Google for the answers or use other apps or websites. Test portals might require students to open their webcams, so their teachers can see that it’s actually the students taking the exams. These may be recorded, so teachers can validate as needed.
Some schools and test centers might require pre-approved proctors to supervise test-takers and make the tests foolproof. This, paired with online ID authentication, can help prevent other people from accessing and taking exams on behalf of the actual test-taker.
8. Cost-efficient testing solution
Schools will use thousands of papers during the examination period. Test questionnaires, answer papers, and scratch papers may all be charged to the school’s paper budget, which can easily be several thousand dollars every school year.
You can always use less paper for tests. Test questions may be printed on multiple columns or printed back-to-back. Answer sheets, especially for multiple-choice tests, can be printed on half-sheets.
Or, you can just eliminate the need for test questions and answer sheets by creating digital assessments for your students. Your students can just choose from options or type in their responses into text fields. They can write, modify, and delete segments of essay-type answers without having to worry about wasting paper and ink.
How are online assessments beneficial for teachers?
Are online assessments beneficial for the school administration?
If you’re a teacher, online assessments mean less work and better quality results when it comes to test management. You may be able to author and conduct tests from any location of your choosing. You’re going to save hours upon hours on grading and recording objective tests.
Meanwhile, your students will benefit from the quality and integrity of online exams. When tests are grade- and subject-appropriate, students’ efforts in reviewing don’t go to waste. Your students’ parents will also enjoy the benefit of learning how their children are doing in school.
If you’re a school administrator looking for an online exam portal or school management software, all the advantages of online assessments can be beneficial to you as well. These can help improve the quality of education your school can provide. All you need to do is pick the right school management tools.