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Assessment comes in various guises throughout the year - from simple formative assessment to check student's understanding to more traditional end of year examinations. Using digital tools for assessments provides a wealth of benefits to you and your students.

See the top tips below to see how you can use digital to help you conduct assessments.

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1. Be clear on student expectations and rules

Assessments can be a stressful time for students and lack of clarity can lead to an increase in unnecessary communications, which isn't good for anyone's digital wellbeing. It's a good idea to give clear instruction to your students regarding requirements for their assignment, including:

  • Format of submission e.g. video, document etc.
  • Assessment timings,
  • How to handle hand-drawn items such as equations, illustrations etc.
  • How to access further help if there is a problem.

You could always record a short video about the assignment requirements that students can watch back, this can help reassure students and relay further information if required. See guidance on Assessment Practice and the Marking and Feedback video for further understanding on the underpinning principles of assessment.

2. Set and mark assignments in Moodle

Moodle has a wealth of features to enable students to submit work electronically and for you to mark and feedback electronically. Features, such as Turnitin, help detect plagiarism in coursework. There are settings for you to specify the type of assessment, including group assessments – just remember to set up the right groupings in Moodle before setting the assignment. Other features include rubrics for criteria-based assessment. For more information see the Online assessment and feedback for assignments in Moodle online course.

Moodle marking guide.
diagram: set up assignment in Moodle, submission, marking, moderation, release feedback and grade

3. Use anonymous marking for summative assessments

Anonymous marking is mandatory for summative assessment unless in the exemption list in MARP.

Take a look at the guidance for anonymous marking and feedback in Moodle to find out the steps involved - from setting up the assignment in Moodle, through to submission, marking, moderation and then releasing the feedback and grade.

4. Use online open book exams in Moodle

Exams Moodle is specifically configured for exams with a restricted set of activities and permissions. You can set an assignment for a restricted time period or a timed, single sitting exam. Alternatively you can also set timed quiz activities. To learn more about setting up the Exams Moodle space for student examinations, see Open book exams in Moodle.

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Use online open book exams in Moodle, Further support Accordion

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5. Be inclusive and accessible

Be aware of student ILSPs when setting up exams for individual disabled student adjustments. There are features in Moodle, such as setting extended timings for certain groups that need additional time or rest breaks, that can help. See the Assessment specific accessibility expectations in the Accessibility guide.

6. Incorporate short formative assessments throughout the year

You can provide simple and more complex formative assessment throughout the year with students, whether teaching in-person or synchronously online, or even when watching a recorded lecture. If you have a recorded lecture, you might want to add some interactivity – like quizzes - into the recording to check understanding or pose a question to reflect upon. During or after an session you could give students quizzes to check understanding, such as using H5P or giving Moodle quizzes which have a wide variety of question types.

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Formative assessment accordion Accordion

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7. Encourage students to present information in different formats

Various types of assessment can be uploaded to Moodle, such as video, audio and documents. The assessment type should be matched to what you are trying to assess i.e, the learning outcomes. Consider the variety of assessment you use. For example, for presenting information, research posters are great for synthesising information and condensing into key points. Video and audio recording could be used instead of more traditional document. This can also encourage students to develop digital skill sets that will be useful in their future careers.

Encourage students to present information in different formats, Further support Accordion