Computer-aided assessment in mathematics: Panacea or propaganda?

Duncan Lawson


The proponents of computer-aided assessment are very persuasive in extolling the benefits and virtues of this technology. Undoubtedly, it has many positive features. However, it also has some limitations and drawbacks which need to be considered. Mathematics as a discipline has certain specific problems which are not relevant to the use of computer-aided assessment in many other disciplines. These problems often feature the introduction of the assessment of other learning outcomes into the process. This can create problems in summative assessment but is less of a problem in formative assessment. Evidence is supplied that students find the use of computer-aided assessment in a formative manner to be worthwhile. Finally, a key question about the future development of computer-aided assessment in mathematics is posed.

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