Extend time allocation of NZQA Externals

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Extend time allocation of NZQA Externals

This petition made change with 257 supporters!
Tim Cheng started this petition to NZQA

I am Tim, a year 13 student, who has sat the NZQA External Exam for the past two years.

In my experience of taking External Exam, I feel that the time given to the students to complete the exam is not sufficient, especially considering that students are encouraged to complete their coursework digitally today in order to reduce paper usage while the Externals are handwriting heavy. I believe that exams shall be given for the purpose of testing the ability and understanding of the student in the specific field that the test is designated in, instead of the ability to rush things done or simply remember information without digesting them.

I have recently opened a case with NZQA, suggesting extending allocated time of externals to 4 and a half hours instead of 3 hours, without increasing number or difficulty of questions. This shall allow students who do not excel in handwriting or require additional time to think and answer the questions thoroughly the time they need, which shall increase fairness. A student who has no understanding of the subject will not be able to answer the question regardless of the time given to them, while a student with a thorough understanding of the field might not be able to demonstrate their ability due to unfamiliarity with handwriting, which is to what I believe, very unfair.

I would also suggest, which I have not had a chance to mention to NZQA yet, to allow students to demonstrate their understanding of a specific field by thesis instead of an exam. The students are to complete a set of questions more challenging than a paper exam, however in open book condition, and present their work to a committee of teachers which will give questions and concerns regarding the work of the student, including plagiarism. The student is then to defend their work and demonstrate their understanding of the field throughout the process. This shall give students who may underperform in an exam but have a solid understanding of the field at the corresponding level a chance to be evaluated fairly. Traditional exams, of course, shall be kept for students who would like to take them.

I believe it would greatly benefit this discussion if I am able to gain support from the public and my fellow students. If you can, it would even be more helpful if you could Email NZQA directly stating your support(https://www.nzqa.govt.nz/about-us/contact-us/the-call-centre/. Thank you for your support.

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