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Festive quiz beams South Africa to Aston

6 December 2006 – for immediate release

Aston’s University’s innovative new assessment technique will see international student Alet de Villiers, based in South Africa, join her fellow undergraduates as they forego traditional exams for a pub quiz style test.

Alet, a first year Psychology student at Aston University, worried that she would miss the pub quiz style evaluation because of commitments in her home country, but a special live internet video link will enable her to take part at home via her lap top computer.

Designed to reduce the anxiety of traditional methods of testing, like exams, and get students talking, this pioneering scheme will involve the 230 first year students working in groups to complete a two hour ‘pub quiz.’

Aston’s Students’ Guild Hall will be fitted out with a microphone, sound system, score board, and staff who will enter scores and check answers. The quiz will consist of six rounds including multiple choice and picture categories, a quick crossword and some stimulus questions.

Promoted primarily as a way to enhance problem solving skills and foster relationships, this unique assessment also counts towards five per cent of the students’ module.

Teaching Fellow Peter Reddy and Post Doctoral Research Fellow Vanessa Parson, who have evaluated this form of assessment, concluded that: ‘a pub quiz would promote interaction, mutual dependence and shared problem solving.’

Both Peter and Vanessa feel that the benefits in first year motivation and engagement make this an ideal end of term Christmas event.

ENDS

For further information please contact Sally Hoban on (0121) 204 4549 or Hannah Brookes on (0121) 204 4549.

Photo caption: ‘Festive students prepare for quiz’

Photo taken by Edward Moss

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