Testing During the Pandemic

It has been over a month since we were on lockdown and teaching online. I have already conducted four tests using my Pustułka app just like we had done before the lockdown. My subjective impression is that my students have not outperformed themselves as compared to tests they had written before the pandemic. Their individual results are very similar.

However, in the case of „take-home” tests which students could do on their own just for revision purposes some results have been much better than those of the tests invigilated by me in class.

I have asked my students a question in an online survey conducted among my 63 students whether tests administered now test their knowledge the same as the tests we had had in computers labs. Over a half of students agreed (35%) or strongly agreed (23%), about a third (32%) remained neutral, and only one out of seven students disagreed (8%) or strongly disagreed (6%).

The conclusion is, therefore, that we can proceed with administering online written tests to evaluate students’ performance while teaching them online using distance learning methods. My recommendation is to set a very tight time limit and either use test questions such as multiple choice, cloze test, true/false or longer pieces of writing such as essays, reports, letters, longer paraphrases, etc. Short answer questions like definitions, synonyms, translations, etc. are unfortunately the easiest to copy from dictionaries and websites.

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