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GUEST BLOGGER: Our education sector needs to improve on its comprehensive analysis to assess students in critical times

The COVID 19 pandemic has though all sectors and walks of lives many lessons that can be well learnt, inevitably, the educational sector has not being spared a share. Most countries are faced with numerous dilemma from closure of mainstream schooling ceasing measurement and assessment. Extreme cases of difficulty in accurate assessment is uniquely a nightmare to developing countries.

Shakadan

Classroom, book and video evaluation are near sufficient. Many times, students are excellent when it comes to studying the course out of a well-written book. However, the challenge lies in testing the student on something more. This is often in relation to the curriculum and the course. Continuous assessment is still the old fashion and most efficient way to go. Most students relax throughout the course and rely on what is locally known as “apor”.

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If a student is able to score excellent grades in a written test or a viva at the end of a course, this is great! However, it does not show how the student is able to differentiate among themselves and others. In order to be able to test the student on various skills, continuous assessment is crucial. Also, over the past few years, students have proven that they can burn the midnight oil and get their grades. It is even now an opened secret that most students find foul ways to excel in their final examinations. And this clearly does not showcase the knowledge that they have acquired over a period of time from the course. Therefore, continuously and regularly assessing and testing their performance on the various parameter is critical.

There are certain characteristic of continuous assessment that makes it different from the mainstream tests. Its regular and frequent nature makes a better way of monitoring the performance of students. Also, continuous assessment can either be an intensive tool or a relaxed yet efficient technique. This form of assessment focuses primarily on the course module and ensure that they are treated as regular feedback. Moreover, the form of the continuous assessment can be different than usual, considering the final objectives. The continuous assessment technique is an effective instrument to determine and develop competencies. This method is comprehensive, cumulative, diagnostic, formative, guidance-oriented and systematic in nature and therefore a better way of assessing learners.

The pandemic presents us with a new dynamic as to how to utilize various forms of assessments and most importantly making the best use of an old tradition - thus contentious assessment. This is a much efficient way of evaluating learners and making it an account of their performance within and without the classroom.

Author: Bless Makafui (Shakadan)

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