Discussion: do away with time limit set for an exam paper

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Discussion: do away with time limit set for an exam paper

Postby Jennifer » Fri Nov 06, 2015 1:02 pm

I always thought exams are for ascertaining the student's mastery of the subject.

If so, is the time limit to complete answering all the questions in the exam paper necessary?

This is purely for discussion purpose, not to lobby to MOE to change policy.

Jennifer
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Re: Discussion: do away with time limit set for an exam pape

Postby jedamum » Fri Nov 06, 2015 2:07 pm

I feel that they should not cap the timing for compo...current 50min is a bit short I feel. Give the kids all the time they need to come up with a good story. That will cultivate kids to write as a budding writer than just try to squeeze in a credible story within so short a time just to get graded.

I think exams is for purpose to streaming...
Is it really to test mastery ?

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Re: Discussion: do away with time limit set for an exam pape

Postby cyberette » Fri Nov 06, 2015 2:10 pm

They have introduced PW and DSA... :laugh:

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Re: Discussion: do away with time limit set for an exam pape

Postby slmkhoo » Fri Nov 06, 2015 2:24 pm

I think a time limit is good for admin purposes - you want to know when the exam ends! On the other hand, exams should be designed so that they don't require students to work at a very fast pace as the test should presumably be about understanding, not speed. Anyway, more time doesn't necessarily mean you will do better. When I was in university, apparently a professor objected to increasing the time for an essay to 1 hr (from 45 mins) because he said "if you can't say it in 30 mins, you can't say it at all!". Of course this was a philosophy paper and probably doesn't apply to all subjects.

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Re: Discussion: do away with time limit set for an exam pape

Postby rains » Fri Nov 06, 2015 3:48 pm

If there's no time limit for an exam, then it's likely to breed competition in who stays the longest in the exam hall, since most of us would connote 'staying longer' with 'write/score better'. It would also pressure candidates to stay longer than they should even if it's to check repeatedly just to make sure they don't make a mistake when they had already exhausted all sparks of brilliance in them!

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Re: Discussion: do away with time limit set for an exam pape

Postby cyberette » Fri Nov 06, 2015 4:04 pm

Time is of the essence. It's a universal thing...

My boss wants me to turn in my executive report within 2 hrs.

My client wants me to clean up the corporate powerpoint and email to him by EOD, failing which I will lose the deal.

My financial controller says I must crunch the numbers in 3 hrs' time.

My supervisor demands that I proofread/vet the newbie's email before sending to CEO by noon.

My HOD wants everyone in the department to give a quick summary of the news headlines each morning.

My customer asks if he should let go of the shares and makes me do a quick computation and send in my feedback before the market crashes.

A lot of real life tasks require timely distillation of information, quick thinking, accurate reading and decision making. Slow workers get "buttered" for mulling over their strategies for too many weeks. Sitting on the job the bosses always decry. Poor time/project management screws up the entire business plan for the year. Busting the timeline will get you into hot soup. Speed and accuracy, prioritisation are key.

I think it's good to set a standardised time limit to hone students' time mgmt and planning skills from young. I mean time allocation for each section, prioritisation of more important sections of heavier weightage, etc. It's to assess if they can perform under tight schedules, how well they manage stress & duress for some! The synchronised test limit (though not all physical conditions are constant) are a fair gauge for every student across the board, from Malaysia and Brunei to India and the UK, so that I know his distinction was acquired within the same time given as mine and therefore as worthy as mine. I'd then not cry foul if someone else had gotten into the college while I couldn't. The punishing time help assess if one possesses the aptitude to process info on one's feet, analyse essay questions critically and calculate math fast and accurately.

These are all lifelong critical skills. :sweat:

That said, there are some GCE papers like Art and Computer Science (if I'm not wrong) that could be done prior to the actual exam date. Lead time will be given to prepare and submit coursework. Not sure if it's still the same these days.

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Re: Discussion: do away with time limit set for an exam pape

Postby pirated » Fri Nov 06, 2015 4:06 pm

Time limit is needed to see who can remember more and apply them in exam without referring to books or notes. That's to sieve out the high ability (various aspects of academic learning) from the average and the lower performer

If no time limit is needed then might as well use the graded assignment scores as proxy, then many people can make similar output. It defeats the purpose of exam

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Re: Discussion: do away with time limit set for an exam pape

Postby slmkhoo » Fri Nov 06, 2015 4:28 pm

pirated wrote:If no time limit is needed then might as well use the graded assignment scores as proxy, then many people can make similar output. It defeats the purpose of exam

Well, another benefit of exam conditions is that it can be verified that the student did not have recourse to notes or help.

As long as the exam doesn't become a race, I think setting a time is good. I guess it's up to the examining board to decide what a reasonable speed is. If every student comes out complaining of lack of time, then there is something wrong. I would say that if about 50% come out saying "not enough time" then it's about right.

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Re: Discussion: do away with time limit set for an exam pape

Postby Jennifer » Fri Nov 06, 2015 4:33 pm

Ah boy bought back the overall progress report. At the back of the report, the grading system for Junior High is printed as follows:

A+, A:
work is of excellent quality: indicates full mastery of the subject and, in the case of A+, is of extraordinary distinction: student was engaged with course requirements and activities

B+, B:
work indicates good comprehension of course material and command of the skills needed to work with course material; student was engaged with course requirements and activities

C+, C:
work indicates an adequate and satisfactory comprehension of material: student has met the basic requirements for completing assigned work and participating in class activites

D, U:
work is unsatisfactory; minimal command of the course materials and minimal participation in class activities

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Re: Discussion: do away with time limit set for an exam pape

Postby Jennifer » Fri Nov 06, 2015 4:37 pm

nothing printed on the back of the report from elder boy Senior High results report

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