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El examen oral

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En el periodo de Agosto-Diciembre 2009 realicé un intercambio en una universidad sueca, Jönköping International Business School. Entre muchas de las cosas que me sorprendieron fue precisamente la forma en que llegan a evaluar a los alumnos y su sistema de calificaciones.

A pesar de que ellos manejan la escala del 1 al 100 para después llevarlo a la escala ECTS  (un estándar para facilitar la transferencia de los alumnos y sus calificaciones entre las instituciones de educación superior europeas), el sistema local es diferente.

Asimismo emplean no sólo los exámenes escritos, sino también los orales; esta es la guía del examen oral para un curso de Cambio Stratégico que tomé.

Guidelines for the oral exam

Dear students,

The purpose of these “guidelines for the oral exam” is to provide you with some information regarding the structure and content of the oral exam. The guidelines also include a general note on how we grade your performance, as well as some “study guidelines.”

Oral examination is an established and well-tested way of examining the level of knowledge and understanding acquired by a student. It is a common type of examination at most Swedish universities and is the dominant type in many other countries. [[[EN MÉXICO CLARAMENTE NO LO ES]]]

We believe in a blend of different types of examination, and that is the main reason why we include an oral exam in this course. In a general sense, an oral exam is much like a written exam, the major difference being that you deliver your answers orally instead of in writing. This means that you’ll of course need to be as prepared for the oral exam as you would for a written exam. However, the purpose of the oral exam is also to examine your understanding of the course literature within a context that allows for further learning. In other words, instead of attending a written exam and write down your answers, the oral exam should provide you with yet another learning opportunity as you explain and discuss in the groups. This also means that you have to bring your student ID to the oral exam.

The oral exam is organized in groups of 4 students (please sign up on the lists available on Jibsnet) and it will take one hour. There will be 2 teachers in the oral exams who pose you questions. The main questions are developed in advance by all teachers involved in the course. Each student will be asked (at least) one main question, to which he or she delivers an answers that is as developed as possible. Further, each student has the possibility to complement and add to the answers that the other students deliver on their main questions. This means that there is a possibility to cover different areas in the literature, and that you have an opportunity to show that you also know these different parts of the literature. In this way you are not exposed only to one question with all the “good luck/bad luck” dimensions, which that would imply.

When you feel that you have delivered an answer that corresponds to your level of understanding on the main question, you indicate this to the teacher, leaving room for the other students’ additions. If there is enough time, you will be asked a second main question, with consequential opportunities for the other students to add and complement the answers. The aim is, of course, that all of you will have a good opportunity to show your understanding of the literature.

Your performance is awarded one out of four grades. Either you fail (F), you pass (P), you pass with a star (P+), or you pass with distinction (PD). Pass is equivalent to 24 points, pass with a star to 32 and pass with distinction is equivalent to 40 points (maximum). [[[LOS OTROS 60 PUNTOS SE CONFORMABAN POR  PROYECTOS, TANTO EN EQUIPO COMO INDIVIDUALES]]]

For pass is required that you show a general understanding of the main questions that are asked to you. It also requires that you are active in complementing the other students answers, since this is our way to see that you understand other areas in the literature as well. With general understanding we mean that you satisfactorily explain and show that you have understood theories and models presented and/or used in the course and in particular in the course literature (articles and books). Please note that just repeating e.g. a model does not necessarily mean understanding it. One way of understanding e.g. a model or a theory can be to apply it on a practical example.

For pass with a star the above is also required. However, for this grade you should show not just general understanding, but also a more detailed knowledge, which e.g. could include the background of a model, criticism that have been directed towards it etc. It can also include relevant links to other related models and theories. Moreover, for this grade, you should complement most other students’ answers on their questions. Please note that complementing means not just general content of e.g. a model, but also new perspectives, criticism, and other types of individual reflections.

For pass with distinction the above is required. Further, you should show a deep understanding on a more detailed level, independent thinking and creative, logical reflections on the course literature. Relevant, reflective and not immediately obvious links to other models and theories as well as practical situations are important for this grade. This is the grade for you that can show no doubts that you have learned and understood the literature (articles and the book) of the course.

Failing the oral exam means that you will get 0 points and you have to take the re-exam.

Regarding the literature that will be covered on the oral exam the following guidelines might help you: The lectures give an overview of the subject. However, even if most lecturers emphasize what they believe is most important, it is not enough to simply study the slides. As you may have noticed, in several lectures and seminars the associated literature in terms of articles and book has not been discussed in depth. The reason is a belief that you are able to read and reflect upon this literature by yourself. If some articles have not been discussed at any lecture or seminar, this does not mean that the articles are not important. All articles and the book (Whittington, 2001) will be used as the basis for generating questions at the oral exam.

 The course management team

 

Nótese que…

… repetir algo no significa que uno entienda el tema. ¿No sería éste un problema con los exámenes cuando son estandarizados y sólo se debe dar la respuesta correcta?
… el sistema para evaluar está abierto a escuchar las perspectivas que uno tiene, asimismo como las críticas que uno pueda hacer sobre lo que lee (las críticas son sobre los temas, no son para el profesor, por eso no se genera un ambiente en el que “se reta” al profesor, por el contrario, el cuestionar las teorías, escuchar las opiniones de otros y sus reflexiones, son parte de lo que hace enriquecedora la clase y la evaluación)

¿Has realizado algún intercambio? ¿A dónde? ¿Cuál es tu opinión sobre el método de evaluación que tenía tu escuela?

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