Testing Goes Global

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Testing Goes Global
Laura Morrill Hammami, AMIDEAST
Leisha Griffith-Mark, St. George’s
University (Grenada)
Sirine Sidani, Doha (Qatar)
Globalization and International
Student Mobility
• 10% of grad students in the US are foreign
• ETS Global’s annual sales – $26.19M
• 2009 for the first time the majority of
examinees sitting for the GMAT exam were
non-US citizens.
Why is international testing
important to the US economy?
• Availability of testing services is a key first step
in the university admissions process
• Department of State (Education USA) devotes
significant funds to advising each year to
promote education in the US
• Networks of non-profits and for-profit testing
centers ensure availability of tests abroad
Expansion of both CBT and
PBT Globally
• Expansion of Computer-Based Testing
– Companies such as Prometric offer global
coverage
– Mobile Testing has increased access, but is
expensive
• Paper-Based Testing
– Costs of CBT can be prohibitive
– Large administrations on fixed dates still used PBT
model (SAT)
How does international testing
different from domestic testing?
• Administration is the same as it is in the US
• Physical distance: time zones, increased lead
time, etc.
• Major regional and local variations:
• Infrastructure
• Business practices
• Even government regulation
• Ability to adapt to local conditions is limited
Burgers = Success in the USA
McDonald’s India = No Burgers
Challenges of testing
outside the US
• Logistical challenges
• Cultural differences
• US business practices not universally
known/accepted/possible
– Different customer service level expectations
– Payment issues
– Registration issues
SIRINE SIDANI
TESTING SERVICES COORDINATOR
QATAR FOUNDATION
Qatar
Facts about Qatar
• Qatar is known for its natural gas reserves (about
15% of the total world reserve & the third largest in
the world)
• It is in the process of reforming its k-12 & higher
education systems & this includes change in
language & creating a more student oriented
approach to learning
• The idea of testing & assessment is another central
part of this reform since it is a relatively new concept
Qatar Foundation
• Qatar Foundation is a private non-profit organization that is
dedicated to build human capital & a sustainable society
where the sharing & creating knowledge will enhance the
quality of life for all
• Qatar Foundation’s Education City is a home for 6 state of the
art branch campuses for 6 of the most renown reputable
American universities: Texas A&M, Carnegie Mellon,
Northwestern, Weil Cornell, Georgetown, Virginia
Commonwealth
• All branch campuses have the same admission requirements
as their home campuses
• Qatar Foundation is not only becoming an educational hub for
the region but a testing hub as well
• Challenges we face when administering standardized exams
fall under three categories: Registration related issues,
Cultural/ID issues, Testing space
Registration related challenges:
• Increase fee registration due to the international testing fee
• Many don’t have a credit card nor internet access at home
• Missing out on deadline because registration stops a month
before exam date
Cultural/ID challenges:
• Language is a huge limitation
• Bubble answer sheet / scantron is new concept
• Misconception that for SAT & ACT only Math sections are
required and not the verbal English sections
• Many fail to bring the appropriate original ID due to age factor
or not reading test requirements
Test space challenges:
• Having to book halls in other buildings and facilities way ahead
of time
• Conflicts with other events happening on campus
Looking forward to our move to our new Student
Center which houses our new Testing Center
to try to eliminate most of these challenges
At the end of the day, the gratitude candidates
express when we reach out and help them makes
all the long working hours on weekends
worthwhile.
Contact info
Sirine Sidani
[email protected]
+974-557-78422
www.qf.org.qa
LEISHA GRIFFITH-MARK
COORDINATOR OF EXAMINATION
SERVICES
ST. GEORGE’S UNIVERSITY
GRENADA
Leisha Griffith-Mark
Coordinator of Examination Services
Grenada
•Pronounced “Gree-nay-dah”
•344 sq kilometers i.e. 133 square miles
•Population: approx. 90,000
About Grenada
• Aka the “Isle of Spice”
• Tri-island state: Grenada, Carriacou and Petit
Martinique
• Located in the Eastern Caribbean (southern
extremity of the Windward Islands)
• Warm climate (75 - 85 degrees F year round)
• Became an independent nation on 7th February,
1974
• 2nd largest producer of nutmeg after Indonesia
• 8th time goal medalist at international Chelsea
National Flag
Symbols represent:
 Six stars - six parishes; center star - capital city, St. George’s
 Red – courage and vitality of the people
 Yellow – sun and the warmth of the people
 Green – agriculture and lush vegetation
- large nutmeg producer
About SGU
• Established in 1976
• Offers degrees in medicine, veterinary
medicine, nursing, public health, arts &
sciences and business
• Current enrollment is almost 5000 students
About SGU
SGU Student Enrollment
5,000
4,500
4,000
3,500
3,000
2,500
2,000
1,500
1,000
500
0
Total Enrollment
MD Program
1977/1978
DVM Program
1987/1988
1997/1998
SAS Program
2007/2008
MPH and MSc
Programs
Examination Services
2003-2006
• Office established around 2003
• Staffed by 2 faculty members, one administrative staff and 18
proctors
• Proctored internal departmental Special Accommodation
exams largely for SOM and some SVM courses
• Proctored only one external exam namely the NBVME
Program for the Assessment of Veterinary Education
Equivalence (PAVE)
Examination Services
2007-2010
• Staffed by one coordinator, two assistant coordinators, one
administrative staff and 60 proctors
• Provide proctoring assistance for all school within the
university with special emphasis on Special Accommodation
exams.
• External exams proctored:
– NBVME Program for the Assessment of Veterinary Education
Equivalence (PAVE)
– GRE (paper based exam)
– NBME
Challenges with Administering External
Examination
• Lack of a dedicated test center (competition for space).
• Shorter registration deadlines .
• Local examinees have limited access to US credit cards for
registration purposes.
• Limitations with shipping services on the island (DHL, FedEx
etc).
• Some local examinee unfamiliar with scantrons forms and how
they should be completed.
Examination Services
2007-2010 cont’d
The unit is also responsible for:
• Grading of all university examinations
(centralized grading)
• Facilitating of end of term course and faculty
evaluations for the university.
Special Accommodation Exams
• Priority is always given to the administering of Special
Accommodation exams.
• SA students must provide documentation to the Dean of
Students’ office for review by the Disabilities Committee in
order to receive SA.
• Students can receive:
– Temporary accommodation i.e. for a single semester or exam pending
additional documentation.
– Permanent accommodation i.e. for the duration of their classes at the
university.
Special Accommodation cont’d
Special Accommodation exam allowances include:
• Extra quiet environment
• Extra time
• Use of highlighters
• Consuming of an energy drink/bar after 4 hours of testing.
• Consuming of a snack (exam time is suspended until student
returns from break)
• Standing and stretching during exams
• Increased font size on exam booklet
Outside the Main Venue
Post a Seating Plan outside of venue
Inside the Venue
During the Exam
Examination Services
Other Activities
Training Sessions:
• Proctor Training – Implementing the university examination
policies.
• Faculty – How to effectively/efficiently administer an
examination.
• Students – University policies concerning examination and the
examinee.
Examination Services
Future Plans
• Dedicated test center which will facilitate Internet Based
Testing
• Offering of other external exams (GMAT, CLEP, computer based
GRE, other vocational exams)
• Hiring of additional staff
• Proctor uniforms and rewards program
Contact Info
Leisha Griffith Mark
Email: [email protected]
University website: www.sgu.edu
Phone: 473-444-4175
LAURA MORRILL HAMMAMI
PROGRAM OFFICER, TESTING
AMIDEAST
AMIDEAST
AMIDEAST
– Based in Washington, DC
– Advising & Testing unit
– work closely with US State Department’s
Education USA program
Testing Programs
•
•
•
•
•
•
Prometric testing labs: USMLE, etc.
TOEFL, GRE
GMAT
SAT
CLEP, DSST, other academic exams
Institutional testing, especially EL exams:
TOEIC (Test of English for International
Communication), ITP TOEFL
Special Testing Services
• High stakes exam in Egypt
– Bulk registration service
– Security measures: secure storage, observers
– Score reporting – receive scores in bulk and
distribute scores them locally
• Local Registration Service
Testing trends in the
Middle East/North Africa
• Continued need for PBT services in our region
• Test results being used locally
• AMIDEAST will continue to work with testing clients
and candidates to facilitate the expansion of testing
programs in support of our mission
Contact Info
Laura Morrill Hammami
Email: [email protected]
Website: www.amideast.org
Phone: 202 776-9616
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