Articles on Exams

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What’s the use of this? Lab Science Career

Are we focusing too much on examining practical science?

Science evokes images of Bunsen burners, coloured liquids, vapours rising from flasks, white coats and safety goggles. But are we making too much of the rigid assessment of the practical parts of science…
Can fear lead to failure? Niall Carson/PA Archive

Scare tactics on failing exams can lead to lower grades

Teachers play a fundamental role in enthusing students about their subjects and helping them prepare effectively for important examinations, such as GCSEs. They can motivate students. But, despite their…
The university was worried the student would not practice medicine safely even if she completed her degree. Jack Hynes/ Flickr

A fine balance: disability, discrimination and public safety

A recent discrimination case has highlighted the difficulty of balancing the rights of disabled medical students with the rights of the community to safe medical and health care. In the BKY v The University…
Maybe I’ll get a better mark if I answer in Mandarin. David Davies/PA

Reforms based on PISA tests alone won’t fix GCSE standards

With the creeping rise of exam results over the past few decades, many have questioned whether standards are really as high as they were in the past. More worrying still is whether pupils in the UK can…
No beating around the bush from the Genesis Expo in Portsmouth. ian_rickard

Redacting exam questions on evolution is a slippery slope

Writing good science exam questions is hard. Getting the wording right, making sure that what you are asking about is clear, pitching the question at the right level, takes time, lots of experience and…
Punching a hole through privilege. Ben Birchall/PA Archive

English grammar schools try to shake off middle class bias

England’s 164 state grammar schools form a distinctive but controversial part of the nation’s education system. These schools are distinctive in terms of their high levels of performance – one consequence…
ABC, easy as 1 to 9? albertogp123

New-look exams from Gove, same old political ambition

Having floated ideas about return to O-level style examinations and an English baccalaureate certificate, education secretary Michael Gove has given in to opposition and stuck with the GCSE. But the reforms…
The right people are not in the room in reform talks. WahTee

A-level reforms need real input from science experts

The government is undertaking an ambitious programme to reform qualifications in schools, with significant changes being made to GCSEs and A-levels over the next few years. This, in theory, is a positive…

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