Parliamentary Replies

March 21, 2018

Digitise examination scripts

Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament

MMr Murali Pillai, Bukit Batok

Question

To ask the Minister for Education (Schools) whether it is feasible to scan or digitise examination scripts before sending them to Cambridge Assessment in the United Kingdom for marking so as to better deal with incidents of scripts being misplaced or stolen.

Response

1. Each year, about 900,000 scripts are sent to Cambridge Assessment for marking. Cambridge Assessment has shared that this is the first time examination scripts were stolen and it is taking this unfortunate incident very seriously. Cambridge Assessment has assured MOE and SEAB that they will review their processes to ensure the security of examination papers and scripts, and safeguard the integrity of our national examinations. This includes a full scrutiny of the courier services offered by its suppliers.

2. I thank Mr Pillai for his suggestion of using technology to reduce the risk of physical movement of examination scripts. Indeed, SEAB is studying the option of scanning and marking answer scripts electronically. This would potentially reduce the risks, such as theft or misplacement, associated with transporting hardcopy examination scripts. Given the large volume of answer scripts and number of subject papers offered each year, the implementation of the scanning and electronic marking of answer scripts would have to be carefully considered.