An Adaptive Trust-based e-assessment system for learning

1st January 2016 - 31st December 2018

With teaching and learning increasingly being delivered online, there is a growing need for robust and trustworthy online assessments. For this reason, The Open University (OU) is part of the EU H2020-funded TeSLA project, which aims to develop an e-assessment authentication system to help ensure that learners in online assessments are who they say they are. TeSLA is developing a suite of tools to automatically and robustly authenticate student authorship in high-stakes e-assessments.

TeSLA will be of benefit to any university that wishes to authenticate students taking e-assessments (including OU). It aims to be able to support any existing e-assessment model (diagnostic, formative, and summative), and will address related pedagogical, ethical, legal and technological issues. The system will be useful for fully online and blended learning, and will mean that students can avoid having to attend a face-to-face examination but will still be able to trust their assessment results. TeSLA will offer to educational institutions, accrediting agencies, and to society in general, an unambiguous proof of a learner’s academic progression and achievements.

To date, TeSLA has undertaken the following activities:

  • Analysing and designing the most appropriate learning activities for e-assessment taking into account both, academic requirements to ensure the learning process and the adaptation to a fully online and cross-curricular assessment.
  • Improving the e-assessment process by introducing tools and resources in the learning activities that capture learners’ data to ensure their authentication and authorship
  • Conducting several pilots of the TeSLA e-assessment system that guarantee the equality of opportunity and respect for diversity in real teaching and learning scenarios, while ensuring the authentication and authorship of the learners during the e-assessment processes.
  • Providing a core version of the TeSLA e-assessment system free of charge for educational institutions, in order to improve their e-assessment processes.
  • Providing guidelines and learning resources for teachers to show how the TeSLA e-assessment system can be used for enhancing e-assessment processes

Leading The Open University's contribution is Denise Whitelock (Professor of Technology Enhanced Assessment and Learning), working with Dr Wayne Holmes (Lecturer in Learning Sciences and Technology), Chris Edwards and Dr Ale Okada.