formal ‘pen and paper’ examinations :) help me correct my tasks,,luschen.tks,:)

Name: Le Thi Thuy Trang
Date: 9.11.2012

Topic: many people believe that formal ‘pen and paper’ examinations are not the best method of assessing educational achievement. What is your view of examinations?

Formal ‘ pen and paper’ examinations have always been deemed as an integral part of the education. Especially in today’s educational background, when people have a growing concern about study, ‘pen and paper’ exams have been strongly promoted as an inherent method adopted to assess students’ performance. However, many, including I, believe that there are some problems remaining unsolved in these kinds of test regarding  exams’ loads of knowledge and their authenticity.

In the first place, one of the main drawbacks of ‘pen and paper’ exams is the heavy loads of knowledge required of students to absorb. Truly, students everyday are struggling academically in schools, extra classes and even at home. Vietnamese educators are those most responsible to be blamed as they enacted a policy of an educational system full of theories, compared to that of Western countries. For example, history has many things to do with dates and events, forcing students to remember all thus turns out as an impossible mission. Additionally, I am sick and tired of having to learn all of the Chemistry reactions by heart. To date, I have still questioned the pracability of these established theories into my future life. In a sense, a heavy workload of required knowledge appears as a headache to Vietnamese educators and people as a whole.

Another problem troubling me whenever I think about the currency of the written tests is their real authenticity. Overloaded with so many lessons makes it less likely for students to grasp all knowledge. This, to some extent, accounts for why the notion of ‘ rote learners’ appear. Worse still, many students dare to cheat in exams, specifically, they carefully prepare cheat sheet beforehand and secretly use them during their performance. Their sole aims are to get high score to make their parents proud of them or to win a well-paid job. Sadly, this  leaves outstanding resumes but poor educational background which will in the long run hurt national education system.

However, it is not by incident that ‘pen and paper’ exams have still survived until now. Educators are justified in adopting these tests to evaluate students’ educational achievement. It seems to me that little time  and low costs are the two redeeming features left. To clarify, compared to oral exams, written tests are obviously time-saving as examiners just distribute and collect all students’ papers. Likewise, formal written tests help save costs while in practical exams, very large expenses are spared for facilities equipments such as chemistry tools, labs, swimming pools, courts, to name a few. In general, it is in sharp contrast to other kinds of tests, that formal ‘pen and paper’ tests are still popular thank to their intrinsic characteristics namely short time and limited costs.

In view of the above-mentioned discussions, one can conclude that the disadvantages of written tests overwhelmingly outweigh their advantages. However, ironically, these tests are being adopted across many countries, including Vietnam. It is high time international educators sat down and made a joint effort to come up with more efficient approach to assessing students’ performance or else our young generations will be at severe disadvantage compared to their peers living in practical-based education.

TOEFL listening lectures: A lecture from a social sciences class (2)

Hi, unfortunately, I thought this was not one of your stronger essays. The subject seems pretty tough though. Your vocabulary is good, as always, but you seemed to have quite a few odd sounding, ambiguous, or even confusing sentences. You never really fully explained what the alternatives to “pen and paper” examinations might be - this would have strengthened your arguments, as some of your reasoning seemed overly vague and general. Still you are a very strong writer - I’m sure this is just a temporary setback :slight_smile: I would still rate this a 4 out of 5.