Treaty

Say goodbye to Scantrons

Parkway eliminating Scantron testing starting next fall

Chloe Lewandowski

Chloe Lewandowski

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Scantron testing has been around since before the parents of most South High students were in school, 1972. The little bubbles are are found on state standardized tests, the ACT, and the SAT. The tests are popular with both students and teachers. This year Parkway School District has announced an end to Scantron testing beginning in the fall of 2018.

History teacher Adam Weiss explained the topic in further detail.

“Scantron tests are the most efficient way to grade multiple-choice questions. Teachers have more time to focus on written response questions,” he said.

Many other teachers at South are unhappy about giving up Scantrons.

History teacher Carrie Steele had much to say about testing.

“My tests are in sections, a multiple choice section, a short answer section, and usually an essay question. Having Scantron tests for multiple choice questions allows me to grade the written response and essay questions more in depth, and still get them back to the students quickly,” Steele said.

While Scantrons will be missing at South in years to come, there are other options for electronic grading of multiple choice tests.

“Next year most of us will start using Zipgrade. Zipgrade is an app that grades multiple choice tests efficiently and actually gives more data than Scantron test machines can. Overall, it is pretty similar to Scantron machines, except on a phone,” Weiss said.

While Zipgrade seems to be the “new Scantron” and the new way teachers will begin to grade the multiple choice sections of their tests, some are more weary of the new and upcoming technology.

“I like Scantron testing. It’s nice because it’s tangible, quick and simple to use; however, the machines are expensive to upkeep. Recently ours haven’t been working, so we give the history teachers candy to use theirs! I will wait as long as possible to turn to Zipgrade, but eventually I will have to,” science teacher Julie Jauss said.

All three teachers do seem to agree that Zipgrade will give more information on tests.

“Zipgrade can give class data to show how students did on each question. If the majority of students missed a certain question, it’s easy to see so that I can revise that question for future tests, or remove it from the total test score easily,” Steele said.

Not only can it tell class data but it is more accurate, according to Jauss.

“It’s simple to rescore a test on Zipgrade. On Scantron tests it could be run through wrong, so you would have to re-run the test to correct the score, on Zipgrade these errors are less likely, and in the click of a snapshot they can be rescored,” Jauss said.

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