E-Assessment for a large first year business statistics unit: Opportunities created by COVID-19

Assessment of statistical learning in a large first year business statistics unit with more than 1,000 students in each semester is challenging especially when the aim is to understand what students are thinking, in other words, hearing the student voice. On paper-based assessments questions for first year statistics units, usually, include questions where students require to state a research question based on a given scenario or context, identify relevant formula, solve problems, provide numerical answers, show how they reached the final solution, and most importantly explain the results. In 2020, COVID-19 pandemic forced many of institutions to move to alternative ways of assessing student learning which usually meant that invigilated on campus paper-based assessments are replaced with non-invigilated e-assessments. The challenges of e-assessments are different depending on the level of the learning (first year versus third year), discipline (maths, stats or essay-based disciplines) and depending on the class size (more than 1,000 and less than 50). Therefore, solutions to the challenges require careful thinking and planning of assessment tasks to provide opportunities for the students to achieve best learning outcomes without making it too onerous for the academics (especially for marking time). In this talk, I will present a solution from my teaching. Specifically, I will provide examples of having automatically marked questions where plagiarism is minimised by having lots of versions of them (i.e. the versions could be as many as the lecturer wants, but I used 50 to 100 different versions) and open-ended questions which requires manual marking but it is all online.