In the Manchester Pharmacy School, we first adopted summative on-line examinations in 2005. Since then, we have increased the range of question types to include short answers, short essays and questions incorporating chemical structures and we achieve time savings of up to 90% in the marking process. Online assessments allow two novel forms of feedback. An anonymised spreadsheet containing all the marked exam scripts is made available to all students. This enables students to see a variety of answers than are awarded good marks, rather than a single model answer. Secondly, “Smallvoice” a novel app provides confidential personalised feedback. Feedback statements, though written by the instructor, are selected by a computer in response to various aspects of a student’s performance. Evidence of improved student satisfaction comes from the unit questionnaires and from the National Student Survey. Evidence of improved learning comes from comparing pre- and post-feedback assessments (typically course tests and end of unit examinations.).
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