On the line: exploring students’ views about the switch to online assessment

Why COVID online exams research?

The COVID-19 pandemic forced universities and other HE providers across the globe to move examinations online, with the two-fold difficulty of ensuring:

  • Appropriate technology was in place.
  • Virtual examinations were just as rigorous as in previous years.

Ahead of a second year of online examinations, we wanted to speak with students and uncover some lessons for universities to learn.

Suspicious minds

To bring quantitative insight to COVID online exams research, we conducted a survey in late 2020 with 1,055 students in the UK, which revealed:

  • 59% agreed that they were satisfied with their online assessment, but this was much lower for students in more creative subjects.
  • Only 42% agreed they were happy with the invigilation of their online assessment, while a third of students disagreed.
  • When asked to predict the longer-term impacts of a move to online assessments, 40% thought it would lead to a decrease in recognition of their qualification by employers, while 72% predicted an increased risk of cheating.

Interested in your own research?

Our dynamic and dedicated team have vast experience with talking to students, and a range of other audiences, about sensitive issues.