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Lazy measurement tools causing problems in our education system

April 02, 2024

Original Article:

The same educational issues continue to be discussed by stakeholders this year as they were previous years (“Digitised exams and essay rethink for HSC”, March 15). Specifically, we are talking about the way the HSC success is still being measured only by an exam attempt with a result at 90 per cent or above. Therefore, any result less than 90 per cent is regarded as a failure for ranking purposes. If those stakeholders would like to see the impact of the educational conversation arising from these harsh and lazy measurement tools, then spend time talking to a range of HSC students as well as their teachers. Thankfully, teachers will always still value the opportunity to embrace the quest for academic excellence for students while still working to preserve a love of learning; affirm improvement; teach life skills; manage mental health and build social awareness in their classes.

For the 2024 class of the Schools Summit, your homework is to design a more robust measure of school success. Sorry, but there are no more extensions allowed for this task. It is already overdue. Of course, my door is always open at lunchtime if you do need help and you don’t mind me gulping on my sandwich while we talk. Grant Murphy, Russell Lea

The HSC has become predictable with students memorising essays to then mould into the question asked. Time to embrace artificial intelligence within the exam context. Provide students with an answer from AI, over a set question, and get them to critically examine the response. A great way to stimulate originality. The response does not have to be length of an essay, but would require a structured and well reasoned argument. And time to stop letting universities cherry-pick the best, with early offers before the HSC exams. Force universities to get in line and wait like everyone else to see what results bring in mid-December.


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