What is e-Assessment?
e-Assessment or electronic assessment is one of the domains of e-Learning,1) and usually refers to an electronically delivered assessment.2)3)
The Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC) defines e-Assessment as
“the end-to-end electronic assessment processes where ICT is used for the presentation of assessment activity and the recording of responses. This includes the end-to-end assessment process from the perspective of learners, tutors, learning establishments, awarding bodies and regulators, and the general public.
“… a range of activities in which digital technologies are used in assessment. Such activities include the designing and delivery of assessments, marking – by computers, or humans assisted by scanners and online tools – and all processes of reporting, storing and transferring of data associated with public and internal assessments.”
e-Assessment is usually divided into divided into:
computer-assisted assessment or computer-aided assessment (CAA) - “practice that relies in part on computers – for example, use of online discussion forums for peer-assessment”
computer-mediated assessment (CMA)
computer-based assessment (CBA) - “assessments delivered and marked by computer”
Advantages of e-assessment
As learning is nowadays more and more facilitated by electronic technologies, it is expected that they will prove to be central in the assessment process too. Technology is expected to facilitate testing and enable authentic assessment.5)
“The variety of applications of e-assessment reported and their innovation and general effectiveness indicate the potential of e-assessment to significantly enhance the learning environment and the outcomes for students in a wide range of disciplines and applications.
The advantages of e-Assessment can roughly be divided into following categories:7)
Interface richness enables for example dynamic presentation of the test content, adaptive level (tailored testing
) and speed of the assessment or innovative item formats.8)
An e-assessment can be accessed using just a personal computer, and Internet connection. In case of a survey, this also allows a much more diverse sample of population to take the test.9)
Standardization. The test is presented at the same time (if desired) in the same format to everyone.
Results processing. Even if automatic correction and grading is implemented just partly, it saves time and human resources, is cheaper and enables faster and richer feedback. It also enables easier results processing to get feedback on the test items and overall result of all attendants. Also, test responses do not contain handwriting, an element prone to subjective judgements of the evaluator.
Measuring additional parameters.
Computers enable measuring parameters like time required for making a response10)
, or record when an answer previously answered question was changed.
Disadvantages of e-assessment
Disadvantages of e-assessment include:
e-Assessment system architecture