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Alberta (Canada) Diploma Examinations

LovelyisuLovelyisu In my cardboard box < 3Posts: 165Member
Do you think it's fair?
Alberta is the only province in Canada to still have diploma examinations from the government that is worth 50% of their mark. Do you think it's fair for the government to create a standardized test that's supposed to be done within a 2 hour session that is ALSO worth 50% of your final grade?

I tried searching through Google for some opinions, but the most prevalent results were only from the Government of Alberta's Education website and Dave Hancock's opinion on them. :ph34r: :phew:

In my opinion, these standardized tests are stupid. I'm fine with final exams, but to have an exam created by people who follow a rigid cirriculum rather than the actual teachers who know what you've been's just plain unreasonable. Millions of dollars are spent on hiring people to create these exams and to mark them as well. That is money that can be used to fund education and help students develop their knowledge rather than those recent cuts on education. -_- Alberta is also the only one to have the diploma examinations after Quebec (I'm not sure, there is little information to be found.) took out the provincial testing a while ago. I'm just not sure how a standardized test (written by "professionals" you've probably never seen before) that's made to be finished within a 2 hour setting is supposed to test your knowledge of a whole semester. The least they could do is lower the 50% toll on your final grade.

What are your opinions?


  • xstarBURSTxstarBURST no. somewhere in a box.Posts: 4,729Member


    edited November 2011
    Ah they sound like Provincals in BC but they were only worth 40% of your final mark. They now made it optional in grade 12, with the exception of the English 12

    I actually prefer having these tests. Maybe this is just me or the teachers I've had in the past but I found that some of the teachers I had don't know how to teach the material. Just because they major or specialized in that topic doesn't mean they'll be the greatest in it. In my opinion it just filters out which teachers are better at teaching the topic they teach OR kids who actually put the time in and study. It's great that the univeristy/ college admissions used to take the provincals marks into consideration. It just shows who actually put the effort in to studying and not copied off some one else's test; or the teacher was too easy with the marks.

    When I was in high school, I found teachers gave away too many pity marks.
  • junjun-xjunjun-x Posts: 85Member


    To be honest, I love Alberta diploma exams, and the fact that they are worth 50%.

    Why? I'm a diploma IB student. Each of my classes have different standardization procedures (for example, for Physics, I did not get any standardization), so my marks are lower than I would like (and what I feel like I deserve). But, I do well on the diplomas (98 in Physics, 100 in Math are the only two I have taken so far) and the IB exams (7s in Physics and Math - hopefully more to come). Since my IB marks are not really worth anything at the moment, I can only pull up my school marks with my diploma exam marks.

    And honestly, even though it is designed to be a two hour exam, most of the time, students finish much earlier (I know I finished the math diploma exam in around fifty minutes). The questions are not difficult, and the concepts the exam covers are fair. I am not sure about non-IB classes, but all of the concepts are covered during class - if something is still confusing, I just consulted my textbook.

    My friend who finished Biology SL IB pretty much memorized the textbook, and got 100% on the Biology diploma. None of the questions on the diploma are "tricky". All the questions are from the concepts the course should cover. c:

  • pupluvgurlpupluvgurl Posts: 402Member


    I wish that there were these tests all across Canada! I am an Ontario high school student and I wish there was a standardized test to help determine what marks are really fair in high school.

    Teachers must teach a certain amount of information in a course for the student to gain the credit. The professionals who are writing your exam know what the teachers should have taught you and give you the test based on that. If you didn't do that well its either your own fault you didn't study or the teacher's fault that they didn't teach you all the course material required.

    Some students attend schools where the curriculum is harder, some attend other schools where the curriculum is easier. If one student at a harder school gets an 80 in math and the other student gets 90 in the other school, who will be accepted? Obviously the student with 90, however the student with the 80 could've easily gotten a 95 at the other school, is that fair? Also, I know a school 20 minutes away from my school allowing students starting from grade 10 science have a cheat sheet for science exams, while the only exam at my school allowed with a tiny card of answers is for grade 12 biology. I don't understand why universities and the government can't use something like a standardized test to determine whether or not the mark is an actual reflection of the student's level of achievement.
  • achuachu A. Posts: 734Member


    standardized tests are good because every school can have their own different standards and thus cause grade inflation.
    wouldn't it suck to know that if you went to school A and got 70% but when you go to school B you get 90% for the same course?
    thats what standardized tests are for; to bring all the different school standards back in line.

    please remember that education is a provincial responsibility and not under federal jurisdiction.
  • karyeekaryee CanadaPosts: 427Member


    pupluvgurl wrote on 27 November 2011 - 07:20 PM:

    I wish that there were these tests all across Canada! I am an Ontario high school student and I wish there was a standardized test to help determine what marks are really fair in high school.

    Also, I know a school 20 minutes away from my school allowing students starting from grade 10 science have a cheat sheet for science exams, while the only exam at my school allowed with a tiny card of answers is for grade 12 biology.

    Omg seriously. In grade 11 accounting, we had to know our stuff for tests and exams. We didn't have a little cheat sheet or anything like that. I got an 80 as my final mark because I gave up on my exam lol.. but my friend from another school -______- it was open-book for EVERYTHING. All her tests and even her final exam was OPEN-BOOK. A lot of people got 90s easily. I was so mad when I heard that.  
  • ddceeddcee canadaPosts: 1,776Member


    LOL I was born in Calgary, Alberta! then I moved to Vancouver .__.

    WAIT, prior to this, Alberta had provincial exams too right? but removed them.
    But I think 50% is a bit too much cuz in BC,   different courses are worth different percentages for our provincials.. but they took a lot away so we can't get any more scholarships. 

    But then again, I should really be freaking out about my IB exams.
    In Alberta, 80% is considered an A right?  
  • SM1L3,SM1L3, LaLaLand ~Posts: 46Member


    Being from Alberta, I think it's sort of unfair -__- Like come on, 50% of your mark determined in 3 hours compared to 5 months of your blood, sweat and tears? <_< " Who else bombed that Math 30 P Diploma?? (And the Chem one was way too long lol)
  • huyutfsakurahuyutfsakura Posts: 190Member, New Member


    50%!? Wow! Good luck with not failing that. I'm an Ontario student xD I agree with everyone else saying that these tests are a good thing, but possibly a bad thing as well. With PupluvGurl's example with the 2 high schools. If both these students did the test, then the one from the harder school with the 80 would get a better mark than the one from the easy school. It's kind of unfair with the student from the easy school, what if that student didn't learn much or get taught anything about the curriculum from the teacher? Then a lot of the stuff on the test wouldn't have been taught to the student in the first place thus making that student fail it and losing 50% of their final mark. I agree it's a good thing after all. :/
  • Sarah716KSarah716K Posts: 4New Member
    Good luck with not failing thatavatar2.jpg
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