The maths
e-assessment experience

Christian Lawson-Perfect, Newcastle University. @NclNumbas

Maths has special needs

  • Just displaying maths is hard
  • Randomly generating maths questions is harder
  • Marking maths questions is hardest of all


Demo exam


User experience is really important.

An e-assessment system should be clear and intuitive.

Marking must do what it says, and say what it does

An example picked at random from mathcentre

Little details in Numbas

Always explain what's happening.

Confirm before doing something irreversible.

Show validity warnings before the student submits.

Question design

Two questions

Good questions:

  • Tell the student what you want them to do.
  • Tell them how to enter their answer, including any restrictions.
  • Put things in the right order and make important information easy to find again.
  • Make sure graphics are readable.
  • Explain how the mark was calculated.
  • Are written in full sentences.




Source code