Welcome to smart tests

This is the home page of the "smart tests" research and development project. The project is being conducted at the University of Melbourne by Professor Kaye Stacey, Dr Vicki Steinle, Ms Beth Price and Dr Eugene Gvozdenko.

A 'smart test' is a specific mathematics assessment that reveals thinking. These innovative tests, which are accessed through an intelligent on-line environment, provide teachers with an informative diagnosis of their students' conceptual understanding of most of the topics in junior secondary school mathematics. Primary teachers also find some of the tests useful. Within a few seconds of a student completing a test, the research-backed diagnosis is ready for the teacher. We intend that this information will be concise enough to be readily useable by teachers, deep enough to make a real difference to lesson content, and linked to appropriate teaching resources. Smart tests are currently being used in schools and further tests are being developed. The range of topics and year levels covered by smart tests is continually growing. Tests can be used by students anywhere there is a computer with an internet connection.

The aim of the project is to take the results of decades of research into students' mathematical thinking and conceptual development and to put it into the hands of teachers, in a way which will help them personalise learning by planning lessons to meet the individual needs of students in their classes. We have two types of research questions. Firstly we want to extend research on students' understanding of mathematics, and to use this to improve diagnosis and teaching suggestions on many topics. Second, we want to understand better the ways in which teachers can use this very specific type of "assessment for learning" (formative assessment) on a day-to-day basis. We welcome feedback on both these issues.

How to participate

Teachers from any educational system are welcome to join us in using and developing the smart tests. At this stage, there is no cost involved but we hope that you will often provide feedback on the tests you use. There is a simple electronic questionnaire that will be sent to you. Your feedback will allow us to make further advances to the system. Smart tests are being continuously improved: many are now very polished; others still need work.

If you wish to participate:

FIRST go to "Using smart tests" and "Try smart tests" to decide if these tests suit your purposes and to read how to use smart tests with students and use the results in teaching (essential for first time participants)

THEN

Acknowledgements

Smart tests accessed from this page should be referenced as: Stacey, K., Price, B., Gvozdenko, E., & Steinle, V. (2013). Specific Mathematics Assessments that Reveal Thinking. Retrieved INSERT YOUR DATE HERE from http://www.smartvic.com/teacher/

The initial project, formally entitled " Supporting personalised learning in secondary schools through the use of specific mathematics assessments that reveal thinking" was funded by the Australian Research Council Linkage Projects Program LP0882176 in partnership with the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development, Victoria (2008 - 2010). Subsequent development has been funded in conjunction with the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development, Victoria and also the Catholic Education Office (Melbourne).

Associate Professor Helen Chick (University of Tasmania) was a member of the smart test development team until the end of 2011. During this time she made major contributions to the project.

Many schools assisted in the initial development of smart tests, including Buckley Park Secondary College, Gladstone Park Secondary College, Melbourne Girls' College, Taylor's Lakes Secondary College, Ashwood Secondary College, Bayside Secondary College, Princes Hill Secondary College.

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