Monday 5 December 2016

TCD delays exam results due to marking concerns

John Walshe Education Editor

Published 19/06/2010 | 05:00

EXAM results for 160 student teachers at TCD have been delayed because of concerns over the way some final papers were marked, the Irish Independent has learned.

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Unusually, the external examiners refused to 'sign-off' the results for one particular subject offered by the School of Education -- because it did not have full confidence in the manner in which the papers were marked internally by the school. The senior extern is believed to be an academic from Scotland.

The papers will now be re-marked by another academic, and the reconvened Annual Court of Examiners for the Higher Diploma (Primary Teaching) will now sit on Monday, June 28, at 2pm.

The results will be published the following day at 5pm.

The delay affects about 60 graduates at the Froebel College in Sion Hill and about 100 graduates at the Marino College. They were taking the course which would give them a qualification to teach in primary schools. The graduates will get their diplomas from Trinity, where they have been studying for one day a week.

The university says the recovening of the court shows how its quality assurance works, and the school has told the students that it regrets the inconvenience.

But it has caused considerable annoyance in the two 'associated colleges', as they are called. Relations between the colleges and the school are poor, as was disclosed in a quality report two years ago.

That report referred to frustration among the colleges' staff about issues being raised, but promised developments not taking place. It said there was little sharing of examination papers, no shared programmes, and no informal meetings of staff on a regular basis.

At a strategic level, senior members of staff in the School of Education felt excluded from discussions about long-term relationships between Trinity and the associated colleges.

Since then, Froebel has announced that it is moving to the National University of Ireland Maynooth from 2013, while Marino announced that beginning in September the four-year B Ed degree and the Higher Diploma in Education (Primary) will now be delivered on the Marino campus.

Prior to this, students on both programmes attended courses in the foundation disciplines at Trinity College one day each week and the fourth year of the B Ed programme was delivered by staff of the School of Education on the Trinity campus.

The same quality report said that the record of research in the School of Education was not outstanding. "In terms of international comparison, the department would not rank highly, or even average, at the present time. Some individual members of staff have an excellent record of publication and for bringing in funded projects, but this is not universal," it said.

The report said also that the Bachelor of Education course in Trinity was seen to be in need of a radical overhaul.

Irish Independent

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