Rethinking How We Design Written Exams
The current featured ANS article is titled “Revisioning Assessment and Evaluation in Nursing Education Through Critical Caring Pedagogy: Using Authentic Examinations to Promote Critical Consciousness” authored by Laura A. Killam, MScN, RN and Pilar Camargo-Plazas, PhD, RN. We invite you to download this article at no cost while it is featured, and contribute to a discussion in the comments below! Below is a brief message from the authors, and a video abstract that can also be accessed from the article PDF.
As nurse educators, we believe that written exams are an important part of how we help students learn to think critically and be empowered to speak-up against oppression in society. Since the beginning of the pandemic, we noticed increasing debate in our professional circles around testing practices. This article provides an overview of historical sources of oppression and injustice that educators may unknowingly propagate during traditional exam design. It also addresses the unintended consequences of encouraging surface learning, uncaring practices, oppression, inequity, and cheating when traditional testing is overused or used poorly in nursing education. In the context of critical caring pedagogy and universal design for learning we advocate for authentic assessment, more specifically exams that mirror the real-world context of nurses such as open-book open-web written exams.