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Professional Skills, such as the ability to communicate effectively or the ability to gather and integrate information, are not easy to teach or to assess. A traditional exam is not the best way of assessing these skills because it is limited both by time and by the resources students are able to consult. Moreover, in a traditional exam it is difficult to assess if professional skills have been acquired in depth. In this paper we propose to substitute the traditional exam by a take-home exam in which students have more time to solve the questions and are not restricted by the sources they can consult, thereby providing a highly educational task in which students experience a deep learning process. We also analyze what kind of questions should be asked to evaluate professional skills, as well as analyzing the potential drawbacks of these kind of exams (such as inappropriate student behavior). Finally, we show the results of one subject at the Barcelona School of Informatics, in which the take-home exam replaced the traditional exam. This course has been taught over 11 terms with good results.
CitationLopez, D. [et al.]. A take-home exam to assess professional skills. A: Annual Frontiers in Education Conference. "Proceedings: 2011 Frontiers in Education Conference". Rapid City, South Dakota: IEEE, 2011, p. F1C1-F1C6.
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