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| | |-+  Oxford Plans To Let Students Take Exam At Home To Help Women Do Better
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Author Topic: Oxford Plans To Let Students Take Exam At Home To Help Women Do Better  (Read 1279 times)
Iniko Ujaama
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« on: June 27, 2017, 12:03:15 AM »

A friend shared this with me today noting in his view the unfair advantage it gives the females over male students.

http://dailycaller.com/2017/06/12/oxford-plans-to-let-students-take-exam-at-home-to-help-women-do-better/?utm_source=site-share


Oxford Plans To Let Students Take Exam At Home To Help Women Do Better



Oxford University plans to change its final exam policy in 2018 to help female students score better on their history exams.

The college’s History Faculty will make one of its five final exams a take home paper in order to boost female performance on exams after a study revealed that men are more likely to get a first class degree in history than women, the Telegraph reported Sunday.

Thirty-two percent of women will go on to gain a first class degree, compared to 37 percent of men who will do the same, the study showed.

“This course in particular showed one of the largest gender gaps in results between women and men,” a document said regarding the gender gap in Oxford’s History program. “As women and men perform more equally in submitted work, it was proposed that a take-out exam with questions similar to that in a timed exam should be implemented.”

Some have accused the university of insulting women by making the standards lower to accommodate them.

“I think it is extremely well intentioned and I applaud them for taking the matter seriously. But it is so insulting,” historian Amanda Foreman said. “You are saying that the girls can’t take the stress of sitting in the exam room, which does raise one’s anxiety levels. I don’t think girls are inherently weaker than boys and can’t take it. Women are not the weaker sex.”

Oxford University stood by its decision, saying that the gender gap between scores played only a small part in its choice to change the final exam policy.

“This change is part of a broader goal of diversifying the History course in response to a number of factors, including the need to test a greater range of academic skills. The gender gap was also a consideration in this change, although research shows that the causes of the gap are broad do not lie solely in methods of assessment,” the school said in a statement.
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Iniko Ujaama
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« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2017, 12:28:36 AM »

This article provides greater context.


Oxford University blasted for 'insulting' decision to allow students to sit exams at home as it implies women are the 'weaker sex'

 Camilla Turner, Education Editor

11 June 2017 • 7:30pm

Oxford University has been blasted for its “insulting” decision to allow students to sit exams at home in an attempt to close the gender gap, as a leading historian warns that the decision implies that women are the “weaker sex”.

From the start of the next academic year, the University’s History Faculty is to change its exam system to replace one of the five final-year exams with a “take-home” paper.

The move is designed to boost results for female students at Oxford, who are less likely to get a first-class degree in history than their male peers.
 
Amanda Foreman, a historian who is writing The World Made By Women, said the move was “well intentioned” yet insulting to women.

“The reason why girls and boys perform differently in exams has nothing to do with the building they are in,” said Ms Foreman, who is an honorary research senior fellow in History at the University of Liverpool.

“I think it is extremely well intentioned and I applaud them for taking the matter seriously. But it is so insulting.

"You are saying that the girls can’t take the stress of sitting in the exam room, which does raise one’s anxiety levels. I don’t think girls are inherently weaker than boys and can’t take it. Women are not the weaker sex.”

Ms Foreman said the reason why men outperform women in their degrees is because young men are encouraged to be risk takers, while young women particularly at school are encouraged to be conformist.

“A first class degree is awarded on basis of whether ideas are fresh and new – risk taking behaviour takes you to that point," she said.

Oxford University said that the move is “part of a broader goal of diversifying the History course”. Earlier this month it emerged that the university's History Faculty will introduce a new paper on Middle Eastern, Asian and Indian affairs, after protests against the ‘white’ curriculum.

Male students at Oxford University were six per cent more likely to graduate with first class degree than their female peers in 2016, according to the Higher Education Statistics Agency.

Meanwhile, Cambridge University — where the average gender gap is nearly nine percentage points across all subjects — is also reviewing its exam system "in order to understand fully any variations and how we can mitigate them effectively".

Girls do better than boys at both GCSE and A-level exams and outnumber their male peers in higher education. At secondary school level, girls began to outperform boys in exams when more coursework was introduced in the 1990s.

A spokesman for Oxford University said that “take home” exams will “will challenge [students] to research and construct considered historical essays. Timed exams remain an important part of the course, testing skills to complement the other assessed elements.

“This change is part of a broader goal of diversifying the History course in response to a number of factors, including the need to test a greater range of academic skills. The gender gap was also a consideration in this change, although research shows that the causes of the gap are broad do not lie solely in methods of assessment.”
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