This resource has been drawn from discussions in the General Forum of the Australian Flexible Learning Community during the period July 2002 to May 2003. Many thanks to all who contributed.
Imagine the excitement when this posting appeared in the Australian Flexible Learning Community.
Assessment Generator is an online device that helps you produce assessment plans that comply with AQTF requirements. In summary, it's a website in which you can make a plan, produce some tools to conduct the assessment, save them and print them out for use.
For teachers and instructors, it makes the job of producing compliant assessment plans easier. It's also useful for storing plans that can be reused in different contexts. You can read more about it on the Assessment Generator product page.†
But the excitement was very soon tempered by the technical realities of the tool. This is a typical response to those who tried it out.
The Assessment Generator is a fantastic "free" resource, however if you don't have the MS Server and MS SQL installed , you can't use it !
The disappointment was evident. An explanation of the technical issue soon followed
Because the Assessment Generator sets itself up as a mini website, it does require some higher-level software to run it. To make sure the web pages appear, you need Microsoft's IIS installed. To store and retrieve the information used to build the plans, you need Microsoft SQL Server database software installed. Unfortunately, there are no workarounds for this. Without this software, the Assessment Generator will not work.
Clearly Assessment Generator isnít the solution for everyone. However, for those with the facilities to run it, it is reportedly an excellent tool.
Another tool for generating assessments was volunteered by Community members.
Teaching Templates allows the user to generate multiple-choice questionaires, yes/no answers etc, flash card tests, and after much searching and trialling, I can honestly say that for the price(cheap or free) it is the easiest to use and upload. It is compatible with Netscape and IE. Your student's test results can be emailed back to you.
You can use your generated tests, with photo content, directly from a CD, on the local intranet, or post your test/s to your web page.†
If you are familiar with word software, but not html coding, this is the one we are all looking for. There are no whistles and bells, unless you want them, but this 7.5mb download might be just the right thing for you.
The URL is www.tac-soft.com.
A short but interesting discussion came up throughout the dialogue on online assessment tools. It was a valuable reminder that not everyone is going to e-assess. Hereís a snippet.
...It is good to see others experimenting with new environments. I am too struggling with appropriate assessment tools, processes, etc but for security reasons, tend to revert to a variety of methods that include face-to-face, email and mailed assessments. I am one who prefers open book assessment - because in the real world that is how many work. Call me a traditionalist with assessment - maybe so - but in the delivery of training all avenues need to be explored in terms of providing the opportunities for students and although "on-line" is one that the younger groups prefer, I canít see it taking over as the primary model.
I am also struggling with the new Auditing requirements, and guidelines for "on-line" as I don't believe that many of the issues have been realistically worked through...
The final word was in the form of a national Framework†project.
The Online Assessment Strategies and Models project, an initiative of the Framework's Resources for Teaching Learning and Assessment (RTLA) Program, †has completed a survey of over 150 practitioners. The survey provides an insight into the range and depth of assessment strategies and models being used in the online environment in VET.
What strategies work online? What benefits does online provide for assessing outcomes? What are the challenges? What tools and resources are people using?
You can find out the answers now at:
and download the project's detailed Research Analysis at:
For further details of the project, see http://flexiblelearning.net.au/projects/onlineassessmentstrategies.htm
More recently, this projectís new website, Designing ELearning, which includes a section on Assessment and lots of great tools, can be found at: