NAPLAN online

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In May of every year, students in years 3, 5, 7 and 9 take part in the National Assessment Program - Literacy and Numeracy (NAPLAN). NAPLAN was first introduced in 2008 and has become a routine part of the school calendar in Australia.

NAPLAN, which is part of the National Assessment Program (NAP), is how governments, education authorities and schools can determine whether young Australians are reaching important educational goals.

ACARA is working towards moving NAPLAN online. The aim would be for students to complete NAPLAN tests using a computer or another electronic device, such as a tablet.

The Australian Government remains committed to a national approach to online assessment, including delivering NAPLAN online.

NAPLAN will continue to be paper-based for 2015.

Moving NAPLAN into a computer-based, or ‘online’, environment brings many new opportunities for students and teachers that are often limited or not possible with paper-based tests.

The benefits of online assessments

Some of the main benefits of students taking part in NAPLAN online include:

  • Assessments will use a tailored test design. Students will answer an initial set of questions and then be directed to subsequent sets of questions based on the accuracy of their responses. Students with a high number of questions correct will be directed to more challenging questions. Students who have a lower level of accuracy in the initial set of questions will be directed to questions that are less challenging.
  • Tailored testing will provide teachers and schools with more targeted and detailed information on their students’ performance on the tests.
  • Use of a computer-based environment provides the opportunity to broaden the scope of the assessments.
  • Delivery of assessments online will significantly reduce the time it takes to provide feedback to schools, students and parents.
  • ACARA research into online assessment has shown that students have engaged well with computer-based tests.

As technology develops, ACARA aims to further refine the delivery of the tests to best use the available technology to provide increasingly sophisticated assessments.

 

Frequently asked questions

  1. In moving NAPLAN online, what devices are under consideration?
  2. When will NAPLAN online start?
  3. The media is saying NAPLAN will move online in 2016. Is this correct?
  4. Will all schools commence to undertake NAPLAN online together?
  5. What organisations are responsible for delivering of NAPLAN online? 
  6. How far advanced is the build of the NAPLAN online system?
  7. How will ACARA know when schools are ready to go online?
  8. Where do I find out more information about NAPLAN online?

 

In moving NAPLAN online, what devices are under consideration?

More information on technical requirements and information on devices can be found on the NAP website at Technical requirements.

 

When will NAPLAN online start?

The Education Council, comprising of state, territory and commonwealth education ministers, have agreed that NAPLAN online will be implemented from 2017 on an opt-in basis over two to three years.

Implementation will be determined by jurisdictions, school systems and schools, based on readiness, to ensure an effective and efficient transition.

 

The media is saying NAPLAN will move online in 2016. Is this correct?

There are three components in the program to move NAPLAN online:

  1. Developing of the platform, the national online assessment capability (NOAC). This is being developed by Education Services Australia (ESA).
  2. Having NAPLAN and sample assessments ready to run online. ACARA is responsible for this component.
  3. Readiness by schools and school authorities, including devices and training.

ACARA is working to be ready when the Education Council makes a decision, though full implementation of all NAPLAN online features may not happen at one time. 

 

Will all schools commence to undertake NAPLAN online together?

Implementation will be determined by jurisdictions, school systems and schools, based on readiness, to ensure an effective and efficient transition.

NAPLAN online will be implemented from 2017 on an opt-in basis over two to three years.

 

What organisations are responsible for delivering of NAPLAN online?

ESA is the lead agency for the development of online assessment capability, but it has received detailed requirement specifications from ACARA.

ACARA is responsible for having the assessments ready to run online and reporting the results of these assessments.

Readiness is an issue for state and territory school authorities. ACARA, ESA and the Australian Government are working with state and territory school authorities to ensure the three components of the program are fully coordinated.

 

How far advanced is the build of the NAPLAN online system?

Many of the features of the proposed NAPLAN online system exist in systems already in use and that have been used to deliver NAP sample testing online in 2013 and 2014.

 

How will ACARA know when schools are ready to go online?

ACARA has been working with state and territory school authorities and Education Services Australia on ‘readiness’. Activities have included:

  1. conducted readiness survey
  2. prepared minimum technical requirements document
  3. design of the program to include options to fit different circumstances (internet-based, downloadable).

 

Where do I find out more information about NAPLAN online?

Last updated: 3 November 2014