A classroom-based investigation into the potential of a computer-mediated criterion-referenced test as an evaluation instrument for the assessment of primary end user spreadsheet skills

Benn, Kenneth Robert Andrew (1994) A classroom-based investigation into the potential of a computer-mediated criterion-referenced test as an evaluation instrument for the assessment of primary end user spreadsheet skills. Masters thesis, Rhodes University.

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Abstract

The demand for innovative end users of information technology is increasing along with the proliferation of computer equipment within the workplace. This has resulted in increasing demands being made upon educational institutions responsible for the education of computer end users. The demands placed upon the teachers are particularly high. Large class groups and limited physical resources make the task especially difficult. One of the most time consuming, yet important, tasks is that of student evaluation. To effectively assess the practical work of information technology students requires intensive study of the storage media upon which the students'efforts have been saved. The purpose of this study was to assess the suitability of criterion-referenced testing techniques applied to the evaluation of end user computing students. Objective questions were administered to the students using Question Mark, a computer-managed test delivery system which enabled quick and efficient management of scoring and data manipulation for empirical analysis. The study was limited to the classroom situation and the assessment of primary spreadsheet skills. In order to operate within these boundaries, empirical techniques were used which enabled the timeous analysis of the students' test results. The findings of this study proved to be encouraging. Computer-mediated criterion-referenced testing techniques were found to be sufficiently reliable for classroom practice when used to assess primary spreadsheet skills. The validation of the assessment technique proved to be problematic because of the constraints imposed by normal classroom practice as well as the lack of an established methodology for evaluating spreadsheet skills. However, sufficient evidence was obtained to warrant further research aimed at assessing the use of computer-mediated criterion-referenced tests to evaluate information technology end user learning in situations beyond the boundaries of the classroom, such as a national certification examination.

Item Type:Thesis (Masters)
Uncontrolled Keywords:Information technology, Computer end users, Education, Teachers, Students, Evaluation, Storage media, Testing, Techniques, Question Mark, Scoring, Data manipulation, Management, Analysis, Spreadsheet skills
Subjects:L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher Education
Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA75 Electronic computers. Computer science
Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA76 Computer software
Divisions:Faculty > Faculty of Education > Education
Supervisors:Marsh, Terry
ID Code:3558
Deposited By: Philip Clarke
Deposited On:05 Oct 2012 12:46
Last Modified:05 Oct 2012 12:46
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