Mathematics Lecturers’ Views of Examinations: Tensions and Possible Resolutions

Paola Iannone, Adrian Simpson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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Abstract

If assessment drives learning and the closed book examination dominates the pattern of assess- ment for undergraduate mathematics (as it does in the UK), lecturers need to ensure that examinations reflect the learning they value. This paper uses a mixed method approach to explore lecturers’ views of the closed book examination in relation to other assessment methods, their preferences for different types of methods and the extent to which they discriminate between stronger and weaker students. A survey of staff views confirms the dominance of closed book examinations, but an accompanying interview study shows hidden complexity to this view. In particular a tension between the potential and the reality of examinations is uncovered and suggestions are made for resolving that tension.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)71-82
Number of pages12
JournalTeaching Mathematics and its Applications: An International Journal of the IMA
Volume34
Issue number2
Early online date28 Nov 2014
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2015

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