Updated On | 07, January 2022
Be it any era - the era that followed the “Gurukul” system or the “chalk-board” teaching-learning methodologies, examinations or tests have been an integral part of every educational system.
They enable institutions to select meritorious students based on their performance.
Speaking of the last couple of decades, the traditional pen and paper model was the primary mode of conducting an examination. But with the evolution of computers and the internet, companies and professional experts came out with alternative ways of taking or administering a test that would be more convenient and time-efficient.
“CBT Test” or the computer-based test has become the optimal choice for most industries because of its varied benefits. For instance, reputed companies use CBT as a way of screening candidates when there are a huge number of applicants. Ultimately this assessment enables the employers to shortlist those candidates who meet their criteria for the job and who have the right talent and skill.
It is noteworthy to mention the fact that ever since the worldwide pandemic situation, many companies across different sectors have opted for the computer-based test. Owing to the multiple advantages of computer-based tests, the selection and assessment process of the job seeker has become easier. On the other hand, the schools and colleges were able to progress towards conducting the CBT test online, as per the new guidelines by the educational boards.
What is a Computer Based Test (CBT)?
Computer-based test, also known as CBT test, refers to delivering assessments with computers as an alternative to using the pen-paper method. Such a test can be conducted online using the internet or a computer-aided facility. Usually, this test or examination is carried out by organizations to evaluate or analyze a candidate’s performance, skill, or capability.
With the integration of features like multiple-choice questions, descriptive answers, analytics-based questionnaires, etc, the CBT online test simplifies the evaluation task of teachers. The faculty can be assured of the knowledge-level of students based on the tests mapping & final results.
The availability of additional features such as auto-grading and section-wise feedback makes it favorable to educational institutes.
Advantages of Computer Based Test (CBT):
There are a multitude of advantages offered by computer based tests. Some of the key advantages of CBT test are as follows.
#1: Large-scale delivery of tests
Suppose there is a vacancy in an organization, and several job aspirants have come for an interview, a part of which is to give a written assessment, how long would it take for the entire procedure to conclude? It is reasonable to assume that it will take an entire day, but the CBT test hosts a large-scale assessment online without having to wait individually. In effect not only saving time but also conducting quality online examinations & assessments.
#2: Adjustable and personalized tests
Instructors or educators have the liberty to adjust the difficulty levels of the questions based on the groups of students. After reviewing the responses given by the learners the pattern of the questions can be further altered; by using video applications, the instructors can connect to particular students for oral assessments as well. If the students have any questions or queries to resolve they can easily do so by using other such assorted apps, along with sharing their personal views and opinions.
#3: Grading System
A student waits for his/her result or the score of certain tests taken for a considerable amount of time, likewise, the teacher needs time to go through answers minutely to give appropriate marks. But the instant grading of the CBT system allows for faster evaluation of the performance and based on the data that is collected the approach towards the learning process can also be altered. This also gives the instructors some idea about where the students are lacking and the areas where they need further improvement.
#4: Well-organized and smooth process
Usually, a traditional examination entails quietly lengthy and multiple tasks, starting with preliminary preparations which begin months before the starting of the tests. Be it the securing of the facilities, the invigilators who are hired for the examination halls or rooms, creating the question papers followed by careful storage and keeping it secured. The post-examination process such as retrieval and marking of the answer sheets is equally time-consuming and tedious as well, but all of these processes are automated and thereby streamlined efficiently under the system.
#5: Taking care of candidates with special needs
For students or candidates who are differently-abled, computer tests help them by providing helpful features such as braille keyboard, voice to texts, texts to voice applications, screen reader, magnification, and other such tools.
#6: Exams conducted with integrity
There is an underlying concern in respect to the integrity of the exams taken or given online, but the availability of various security and proctoring features make sure that the test is conducted with full integrity and without cheating.
#7: Remote test feature
With the CBT test online, students do not need to travel far distances to appear for examinations, they can select an exam slot according to their convenience and timing and take the particular test.
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Feature Of Computer Based Test (CBT Exam)
1. Role-Based Access
The software offers role-based access to teachers, students, and admin .
2. Mobile/Laptop Usage
The system can be accessed through a mobile phone or laptop.
3. High Assessment Accuracy
The software ensures high accuracy of student assessment and feedback.
4. Anti-Cheating Methods
The system offers proctoring solutions to avoid cheating during exam.
5. AI-Based Analysis
The software offers AI-Based report analysis for a better understanding of data.
6. Easy Report Generation
The software ensures easy report generation in required formats.
How Does the Computer Based Test (CBT) Work?
- Students register to appear for the examination
- Question paper sets are created by teachers
- The teachers send exam invites to students
- Student’s ID is verified before the exam
- The exam is monitored in run time
- The system gives assessment reports after the exam
Types of Computer Based Test (CBT)
In offline assessment, the candidate attempts the exam from a single computer system located at the examination center. The exam on one system cannot be conducted simultaneously on multiple systems. The assessment is done manually.
Online assessments can be conducted remotely by the students. A single exam is conducted on multiple systems at the same time. The system conducts the exam, checks student’s performance, calculates assessment report, and gives it to the student immediately
Computer Based Test Vs. Paper Based Test
Computer Based Test
- Requires computer and internet connection
- Students can attempt them remotely
- No paperwork no physical storage
- Generates automatic reports
- Conducts automatic evaluation
Paper Based Test
- Requires paper, pen, classroom setting, invigilators
- Students have to be physically present at the location
- Requires papers and physical space for their storage
- Manual report generation
- Needs teachers to evaluate every answer sheet
To sum up
Computer-based tests have become an essential facility provided by the government, corporate and private sectors for conducting assessments or recruiting candidates. It not only saves time and resources but also helps in tracking students’ progress through the data that is generated. The student-centric analytics provides the learners with in-depth insights into their activities ultimately helping them learn about their strengths and weaknesses. Likewise, the educators can use analytics to measure the course effectiveness, keeping track of student engagement, and determining the percentage of accuracy.
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