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EVALUATING THE IMPACT OF THE BAHRAIN NATIONAL EXAMINATIONS TEACHER AND STUDENT PERCEPTIONS’ (PHASE3)

W. Al-Yaqoobi1, B. Al-Sadeq1, S. Shaw2

1National Authority for Qualifications & Quality Assurance of Education & Training (QQA) (BAHRAIN)
2Cambridge International Examinations, Assessment Standards and Quality (UNITED KINGDOM)
The Directorate of National Examinations (DNE) is part of the National Authority for Qualifications and Quality Assurance of Education and Training (QQA). It is an independent organization, established in 2008. The DNE is responsible for conducting National Examinations to assess the performance levels of students against the national curriculum at key education stages (Grades 3, 6, 9) and at international levels for Grade 12 in the Kingdom of Bahrain.

The first administration of grade 3 and grade 6 National Examinations took place in 2009. During 2015 the DNE delivered the seventh cycle of grade 3 and grade 6 National Examinations, the sixth cycle of grade 9 National Examinations, and the third cycle of grade 12 examinations.

As part of the commitment of the QQA to the ongoing review of the impact and quality of its work, collaborative research with its international partner Cambridge International Examinations (CIE) has been undertaken in order to investigate the impact of the National Examinations on the educational landscape in the Kingdom of Bahrain. QQA has identified the need to monitor the effects of their National Examinations on a diverse range of stakeholders by eliciting their views, perspectives and attitudes.

The impact of an assessment will always have some bearing on teaching and learning as well as on other stakeholders outside the classroom. It is important, therefore, that any impact study takes account of the perceptions of its stakeholders, because their attitudes towards the tests may be relevant to its validity.

This paper reports on the findings from phase 3 of a longitudinal and iterative impact research program designed to elicit data from a range of educational beneficiaries on their attitudes, experiences and perceptions of the National Examinations.