Exam markers to get ‘real-time’ information about pupil performance in AQA pilot scheme

According to a report in the TES, A-level and GCSE examiners are to be given “real-time” information on how pupils have performed nationally in this year’s exams before they start marking their papers…

England’s biggest school exam board, AQA, is piloting the scheme that will see markers briefed over the internet on the latest trends that have been spotted in students’ scripts.

They will be shown real examples from the actual question papers that they will go on to mark. Online “webinars” will also mean the markers can be told about any issues that have emerged about the way candidates have responded to the questions.

The board believes that providing this advance information can help improve the quality of marking, something that has become a bone of contention for many schools in recent years. Heads’ leaders have welcomed the idea.

Andrew Hall, AQA chief executive, said: “We understand that getting the right result is crucial for both students and teachers. The way we train examiners to mark papers at the moment works well, but we are always looking for ways to improve.

“Research from CERP, our cutting edge research centre, tells us that giving more examiners access to the principal examiner to get guidance directly from them can help encourage an even more consistent approach to marking across a wider group of examiners.

“This ultimately can help improve the quality of our marking and is something that is a real focus for us.”

The pilot beginning this month will cover GCSE religious studies and A-level English literature. The results will be evaluated later in the year…

More at: Exam markers to get advance information about pupil performance

Does this sound like a good idea to you or can you see potential drawbacks? Is there, for example, any danger of unwelcome over-compensation amongst the markers that might work against some students who have done what was originally required when a majority have perhaps misinterpreted a question? Please give us your feedback in the comments or via Twitter…

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