Comparison of assessed work marking software: implications for the ideal Integrated Marking Tool (IMT)
conference contributionposted on 23.05.2006 by Derek Stephens, Goff Sargent, Ingrid Brew
Any type of content contributed to an academic conference, such as papers, presentations, lectures or proceedings.
The authors devised an experimental marking tool using Microsoft Access. Its features were assessed together with those of commonly available marking software and systems that had been identified by a survey of web and other sources. The marking tools identified, consisting mostly of software designed for the needs of US High Schools, could be categorised by their features. The categories included the ability to calculate and record marks; provide statistical feedback to staff; provide standard written comments to students; and receive work and/or transmit feedback over a computer network. None of these products had the intuitive feel the authors were seeking, and so we propose a model of an ideal Integrated Marking Tool (IMT). The IMT would allow lecturers to mark work using an electronic pen, replicating their current paper-based approach. It would also provide scores for named assessment categories; calculate marks; provide statistical analysis and provide written feedback to students (collated from an editable bank of comments that would build as the number of similar pieces of work passed through assessment). A full report of the above would be printed or transmitted over a computer network for the student and for the central university system. Issues of plagiarism in written work would also be addressed. The model is extended to cover wider networking potential and appropriateness, including the possible network delivery of elements of the IMT, especially the comments database, and the linkage of recorded results to the student records, where they might be shared with other authorised staff. This paper sets out these criteria, and includes comparisons with commercial examples such as Mindtrail, presenting an opportunity for the delegates to discuss the merits of the IMT model and comment on their own experiences with such products.
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