QUESTION - ELECTRONIC SACE EXAMS


Australia's first year 12 electronic examinations were undertaken yesterday by students in South Australia and the Northern Territory: 2,079 students in 115 schools completed the stage 2 English Literary Studies exam. This was a historic day for education in Australia and positioned South Australia and the SACE

ard at the forefront of education practices that respond to the demands of the modern world. The success has been largely due to the close partnership between the SACE Board and schools in South Australia and the Northern Territory, and I pay tribute to members of the SACE Board who have overseen this innovation.

 

School staff were trained in managing situations on exam day, including the contingency plan and protocol in the event of a technical outage or any other exam day disruption. There were two students who were eligible for special provisions who had an arrangement to complete the examination on paper, and a further five students who commenced the examination electronically but moved to paper during the course of sitting the exam.

The reasons for moving to the backup are being investigated, but it is most likely due to a technical disruption with the device they were using. No whole school reverted to paper. No student will be disadvantaged by the move to paper, and special provisions will be applied where appropriate. Any other minor issues that emerged on the day were successfully dealt with at the local level by the schools hosting the exams.

This is the direction for travel for exams in South Australia and indeed, in my view, the whole country. The program is set to expand to include psychology and modern history next year. More subjects will be added in due course. Electronic exams open up new possibilities for new ways of assessing students' knowledge and what they can do with that knowledge. The SACE Board is considering future directions for exams where potentially videos and interactive content may be used to allow students to demonstrate their learning in ways that may also be expected by their future employers. I thank the SACE Board for the work they have done on this project.