Regional Examinations Body Begins E-testing

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, Wednesday January 25, 2017 – The Barbados-based Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) reported success as it officially launched its Electronic Testing Service to the region yesterday.

Some 500 candidates from seven countries – Jamaica, Grenada, Dominica, Cayman Islands, Anguilla, St Lucia and Montserrat and St Lucia – tested the online initiative which allowed students to use a computer or an electronic device to sit their Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) Paper 1 (Multiple Choice) examination in more than a dozen subjects.

Barbados’ Education Minister Ronald Jones gave thumbs up to the initiative which CXC said “would bring regional learners up to speed with worldwide test-taking practices and provide them with the flexibility to interact with images, video, audio and other resources during their examinations”.

He told the brief launch there were no real challenges with the initial offering.

Jones noted that candidates, invigilators and education officials were happy with the results and he was confident it would be embraced as more countries get on board.

“The relatively small January sitting afforded CXC the opportunity to gauge the acceptance by candidates as well as the implementation of examinations administration personnel who worked directly with the new system. . . .It was rewarding to learn that in all territories the feedback received was emphatically positive,” he said.

CXC registrar Glenroy Cumberbatch said the move to embrace technology was a step in the right direction for the region.

He was confident that Caribbean students and teachers would appreciate the initiative.

Stressing that technology was the way of life, Cumberbatch said it was imperative that students be allowed to exploit its benefits in the classroom and not just for social networking or leisure.

“It is not easy for students to take part in an activity in one way and then the exam is in a totally different way. If information technology can be used for teaching and for learning then it should also be used for testing,” he said.

CXC has assured that its e-testing platform will adhere to world-class security standards, which will guarantee the integrity of the test taking.

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