Number of breaches during New Zealand's end of year exams

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Tuesday, January 9, 2007


Wikinews has acquired, under the 1982 Official Information Act, documents that show how many breaches of exam rules occurred during New Zealand's end of year National Certificate of Educational Achievement (NCEA) exams in 2004 and 2005. The breaches includes all levels: level one, level two, level three and scholarships.

During the external exams, the supervisors have to report all breaches of the rules. Those breaches are then given a punishment, which includes a written warning, exam results from a subject being withheld, all exam results being withheld for a year or banning the student from sitting any external exams the next year which has only ever happened once. The student was banned for constant breaches of the rules and constant disruptions in numerous exams. If a student causes disruption to other students during the exam, that student can expect harsh penalties as New Zealand Qualifications Authority say they consider a disruption very seriously.

In the first year of NCEA, 2004, a total of 129,853 students took part in external exams and of those, 186 breaches were filed by supervisors. 89 of those students had some subject results withheld. And, bringing the total to 90, one student had all results withheld and was prevented from sitting exams the next year.

In 2004 "Accessing Information or Materials" rules included, bringing in own paper which happened 13 times; using an electronic translator, 17 times; using a mobile phone, 18 times; bringing in notes, 41 times; using book(s), once. Rules relating to "Influencing/Assisting or Hindering" are, disturbing or communicating with other students, which happened 11 times and 26 times respectively. "Not following Instructions" rules are, drawing or writing rude notes on the answer paper, happened 20 times; continuing to write after exam has finished, eight times; listening to a music player, four times; prematurely starting the exam, four times; refusing to stay under supervision, two times; cheating (includes attempts to), 12 times; altering an answer booklet then getting it reconsidered, once. An Information Management external exam had to be held over several sessions due to low resources. All students were required to remain in a secure environment for 30 minutes after the exam following theirs had started, two did not which was considered a breach of the rules. And seven peoples' submitted portfolios had authenticity issues.

"Forms of Misconduct" was changed in 2005, so the definitions have slightly changed.

Out of 132,241 students sitting exams, 208 of them broke the external exam rules.

95 of those students had some of their results withheld and only one person had all of his exam results withheld, for a year. The other students, 112, received written warnings.

89 students were investigated for "Accessing Information or Materials"; 13 for having a cellphone with them; 40 for having notes in the exam; 13 for copying, or attempting to copy, other students work and four were investigated for altering their answer booklet and then having it reconsidered. 70 students were investigated for "Not following Instructions"; 47 for writing rude messages on the answer booklet and/or drawing rude pictures. 14 students were investigated for "Influencing/Assisting or Hindering". 29 students were investigated for "Performance Based Authenticity", which is where a group of students work looks very similar to the other.

Only one student was investigated for "Impersonating another candidate".


This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.
This article features first-hand journalism by Wikinews members. See the collaboration page for more details.