How Long Should Exams Be?

The Grumpy Teacher

This is going to be a grotesquely ill-informed post, so if you like your educational disquisitions to be research-based … well, you probably wouldn’t be reading this to begin with, would you?

Last summer, the Department of Mathematics at Oxford University gave all of its finalists extra time to complete their examinations. Not a great deal of extra time – 105 minutes instead of 90 – but it apparently yielded the result for which its instigators had hoped, which was that women performed better.

For me this raises a very interesting question. What’s the ‘right’ length of time for an exam?

There are different models. Some exams appear to be designed so that time isn’t, for most candidates, much of a factor. I may be out of date, but for me recent experience of invigilating science exams tallies with my own more distant experience of sitting them: you get plenty…

View original post 1,015 more words


About teachingbattleground

I teach
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