7th September 2001 at 01:00
RECORDKIT. pound;100 per department or pound;1 per registered pupil. RecordKit CD-Rom, 21 Northumberland Way, Ardsley, Barnsley S71 5DH

Developed by practising maths teacher Vic Woodward, the RecordKit CD-Rom enables all teachers, from primary upwards, to manage data gathered from class tests or other assessments. The system operates within the database application DataPower (from Iota Software -

Pupil data is entered and stored in the database. Teacher-generated objectives (those tested in subject assessments) are entered as text files. Once done, the tests administered and pupils' marks entered, the system generates information. Teachers can see at a glance which questions in a test are being answered correctly or incorrectly, and therefore which areas of the curriculum and which teaching approaches need to be reconsidered - useful both for individual and departmental evaluation.

The kit generates a printable summary of each pupil's performance in any number of tests, including the mark for individual tests, the average mark across all tests taken and, most importantly, a list of the objectives that have been met. The system also lists any guidance which the teacher cares to provide - for example, references to relevant sections of textbooks, dates of lesson notes covering objectives, worksheets, websites, and so on.

Pupils can clearly see which areas they need to work on and where they can go to get help - useful for encouraging independent learning.

RecordKit also creates information for department heads who may want to track the progress of particular pupils - for example, the difference in performance of boys or girls, or between groups of similar ability. Small groups of pupils who need help in meeting an objective can be identified and set a differentiated task. The system can generate a rank order, which can be used to help determine class sets.

Beyond these functions, RecordKit can search in a range of categories - and it meets the requirements of Department for Education guidelines for electronic management systems in schools ( schools.shtml). If your department wants to make increased use of assessment data to generate individual targets for pupils, this CD-Rom does the job.

It also provides handy data to support colleagues' threshold applications, and gives useful and specific information to teachers writing subject reports and to parents who want to support their children's learning at home.

A sample file can be downloaded from the website ( where you can also place orders for the full working version.

Claire Johnson Claire Johnson teaches English and ICTat King's school, Winchester, Hants

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