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Discussion in 'Computing and ICT' started by tonyuk, Jun 26, 2015.

  1. tonyuk

    tonyuk Occasional commenter

    Hi all

    starting teaching this next year at new school - not my choice

    Any advice - structure of tasks, online exam versus other options

    Any resources anyone has - I know there are already some out there but don't want to reinvent the wheel!

  2. ikon66

    ikon66 Occasional commenter

    Not much help but it's expensive and the admin procedures are a pita!!!

    We are using enlightks for courseware and testing
  3. JM6699

    JM6699 New commenter

    Starting this too next year. Signed up for online testing, quite simply to save marking. Other than that i am not buying the course materials as budget is an issue. Going through some of my old task sheets from the early 2000s and revamping them for Office 2013.
  4. tonyuk

    tonyuk Occasional commenter

    Right dumb question time - are all the tests online and how many for a GCSE equivalent?
  5. ikon66

    ikon66 Occasional commenter

    you can do them manually or on-line which get marked automatically and results next day afaik. There are 4 tests for the school qual: spreadsheets, presentation, word processing and a productivity one
  6. vrusu

    vrusu New commenter

    I have done ECDL for many years as all year 9 students do it. It's great a they leave year 9 with a qualification and now it allocates performance points and grades. I use Enlight to administer test. I do one test a half term so they are done the course by April. Any resits are done after school.
  7. tonyuk

    tonyuk Occasional commenter

    Is it fairly straight forward and I don't suppose anyone has any resources they could share or hints and tips to deliver to year 9 so that everything is covered.
  8. madcat

    madcat Occasional commenter

    For the first year I'd just buy a set of decent texts and work through those. I've used the Heathcote in the past which was very useful but I don't know how current that is .
  9. tegs1979

    tegs1979 New commenter

    We use some great resources from a company called cia training. They do printed workbooks and online courses - we use both depending on the student. We did trial Enlight's online stuff but didn't like it (the "simulated software" was nothing like the real thing). That was a few years ago though so it might have changed.
  10. We've been doing it this year, and to be honest I think it's a bit mental that you can grab a GCSE equivalent in just a few days, but there you go!

    What we've done, and what I highly recommend, is going through the tests online and take inspiration from the content of the actual ECDL tests, and then create a mock test yourself for each unit. This does mean you have to create a few different files with specific names etc, but it's worth it as you then have an almost identical environment for them to practise before doing their actual EDCL test. We go through the mock tests, explaining all of the caveats that the ECDL holds and then get them onto the actual test. Usually we can get all 4 done in less than 2 days.
  11. djphillips1408

    djphillips1408 New commenter

    Hmm just a sec are you saying that the content of the exam is the same regardless of when you take it? I see this as "you do the test, you know exactly what the kids will have to answer, so you knock up identical mocks so they really can't fail" - now this is not a criticism of you, but what I am reading here is that let's say I take the test, make a note of all the questions then just give exactly the same test to the kids then when they sit it they get to answer questions they already know the answers to.

    Am I mistaken here? I don't want to join the bandwagon of some posters on here that bang on about cheating in controlled assessment but if I am right in the way I read this then there is a clear incentive for many schools to "play the system" here.
  12. wanet

    wanet Star commenter

    There are different versions of each test, but this does look like cheating.
  13. tonyuk

    tonyuk Occasional commenter

    Has anyone got a copy of the tests they run in practice lol?
  14. larathegiraffe

    larathegiraffe New commenter

    "I highly recommend, is going through the tests online and take inspiration from the content of the actual ECDL tests, and then create a mock test yourself for each unit."

    There is no doubt about it. This is out and out cheating, and it's exactly how my current place does it. And I know other schools do this as this 'method' of preparation was discussed at an LEA meeting I went to. We discussed the semantics of what was okay and not okay of course, but the end result was that we all decided that to get the best result, this as the way to go, and students couldn't fail. We are not a grammar school so this is what we have to do to stay equal.

    Doing similarly identical 'but different' tasks is not cheating as such and you can argue it is not cheating but good preparation. But of course it is cheating. However, the good news is that no one cares and no one has ever been pulled up for this or sanctioned so get your finger out. If you don't do this for all your students, you are putting them at a disadvantage.
  15. JaquesJaquesLiverot

    JaquesJaquesLiverot Established commenter

    It depends on how you look at it. Those of us who remember the good old days when we taught students things might argue that you're putting your students at a disadvantage by only teaching them how to do one thing to pass the exam.

    I know that's how things are, but now that vocational and portfolio-based qualifications are dying out, it's the thing that I most dislike about teaching.

    When I was at school in the 80s, the teachers taught us some interesting things, and if we passed the exam that was a nice bonus. Now, students get taught one or two pointless things that might appear on the test, and everyone gets certificates. Which is the better education?
  16. JM6699

    JM6699 New commenter

    Not sure why you need to go to all of the trouble of creating your own mocks. With the online testing you can use diagnostic tests for a couple of quid a student that provide full individualised feedback afterwards to highlight areas of weakness which can then be supported. Most of us here would regard the content as basic, but I always thought that was what the ECDL was - a test of basic competence.

    Personally I'm not a fan of qualifications in ks3 or trying to herd borderline students through the qualification in a couple of days for league table points, but I suppose I am lucky to work at a school that has never tried to insist I do that.
  17. We've created resources that work like an ECDL exam HOWEVER they are not questions found on actual ECDL exams. We looked at the content and created our own resource "mock tests" with similar questions. It is EXACTLY the same as the prep we all do for GCSEs every year in terms of you have the previous papers, you have access to all the marking they've done previously, but you never use live papers. We do not use live ECDL exams directly; we know the format and general range of questions after running plenty of kids through (for example, we know that the word test will always have a mail merge question). When we started it was very touch and go as we didn't really know what we were doing exactly, but now it's an optimised process.

    I am sorry for not making this as clear as possible in my first post.

  18. I did post to clarify exactly what we do at my school above, if you want to read that as well.

    The thing about ECDL is that due to its nature, a GCSE equivalent for a few days work, schools are shooting themselves in the foot if they don't put even only the key students through. It's a huge amount of pressure that's on the teachers responsible, and unfortunately is more about quantity than it is quality.

    The exams aren't the same each time; they have a number of different ones for each test and it's randomised. What we DO know is that most questions are on certain things, and whilst they're phrased differently the content is still the same, like mail merges and if functions. We know that these tests will always have questions on mail merges and if statements, so we can prepare the students for this.
  19. wanet

    wanet Star commenter

    Thanks for the clarification, but your statement that you can do all 4 in 2 days implies that you are not doing it correctly.
  20. tonyuk

    tonyuk Occasional commenter

    Do you know what I did not want rants about cheating but rather some help and possible resources...like this forum was in the old days with teachers helping each other rather than my Dads bigger than your and we don't do this or that.

    Just a bit of help would be nice rather than a set of "grown up" teachers knocking the system.

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