New exam board technology could encourage teaching to the test

9th April 2010 at 01:00

An exam board is developing new technology to give teachers customised guidance on what to teach based on the previous exam performance of their pupils, The TES has learnt.

In his first interview since becoming managing director of Edexcel, Ziggy Liaquat revealed the board was considering turning its existing results analysis service into a hi-tech teaching tool.

And while one heads' union leader believes the development could be attractive to teachers, he fears it will encourage teaching to the test.

All three of the big exam boards now offer an electronic results analysis service offering schools and teachers detailed breakdowns of how their pupils performed.

Edexcel, which pioneered the idea, now aims to take it a step further by integrating it with the kind of online curriculum teaching tools already offered by its parent company, Pearson Education.

Mr Liaquat said: "If you're a teacher of geography, you're presenting me with this (exam results) data and there's this analysis that sits with it that says, 'You've done well on this question', 'You've done this well against local schools.'

"But what is really meaningful is how you can analyse and present that data in the context of the curriculum, because I need to take that information, embed it in my teaching and move on."

Martin Ward, deputy general secretary of heads' union the Association of School and College Leaders, said he thought such a teaching tool "could be of value to teachers".

But he added: "It will perhaps extend the tendency to teach to the test.

"It is important that teachers feel able to teach what their students need to know, not just what they need to know to pass an exam."

Interview, pages 18-19.

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now