Final say: Worth of Alberta diploma exams drops to 30 per cent from half

EDMONTON — Starting next fall, Grade 12 students in Alberta will get more credit for their course work and there will be less emphasis on diploma exams. Education Minister Gordon Dirks announced Monday that a student’s final mark will be based on 30 per cent of the provincial exam — not the current 50 per cent.

EDMONTON — Starting next fall, Grade 12 students in Alberta will get more credit for their course work and there will be less emphasis on diploma exams.

Education Minister Gordon Dirks announced Monday that a student’s final mark will be based on 30 per cent of the provincial exam — not the current 50 per cent.

The worth of course work will be bumped up to 70 per cent from 50 per cent.

Dirks says more emphasis on school work over the course of a year will be a better measure of what a student has learned and retained.

“A single examination cannot assess all the strengths or weaknesses of a student, even on a single topic,” Dirks told a news conference.

“A single exam mark weighted at 50 per cent does not allow students who may have greater difficulty writing high-stakes exams, or who are undergoing unique stresses on the day of the exam, to fairly excel under the existing weighting regime.”

Opposition critics said the move is overdue. The Alberta School Boards Association passed a motion in 2014 asking for the change.

“This is something that we’ve been advocating for for some time,” said Deron Bilous of the NDP.

“A 50 per cent weighting on one exam for a whole course is far too high.

“Teachers, parents, (and) school board trustees that I’ve spoken with around the province have been calling for something that’s more in line with the rest of the country, which is more of a 70-30 split.”

Liberal Leader David Swann called the announcement progress.

“It will take the (inordinate) pressure off the final exams and improve the ability of students to be reflected in the value of their training and their education over the year.”

The province has also announced 24 more dual-credit partnerships for high school students. The arrangements allow students to earn post-secondary credits or workplace certification while completing high school.

Just Posted

Scares and chills await at haunted house in Red Deer

Zed Haunted House helps raise money for Boys and Girls Club of Red Deer District

PHOTO: Renewable Energy Fair at Red Deer College

The Renewable Energy Fair and Workshops event was held at Red Deer… Continue reading

PHOTOS: Red Deer College Queens host third annual Pink in the Rink game

Queens raised $12,035 for the Central Alberta Cancer Centre.

PHOTOS: The Mustard Seed CEO speaks at Seeds of Hope Gala in Red Deer

The first-ever Seeds of Hope Gala was held at the Red Deer… Continue reading

Person airlifted to hospital after collision near Innisfail

One person was airlifted to hospital after a serious collision west of… Continue reading

WATCH: Make-A-Wish grants Star Wars loving teen’s wish

The Make-A-Wish Foundation granted Anakin Suerink’s wish in Red Deer Saturday afternoon

Turkey to reveal details of probe into Khashoggi’s killing

ISTANBUL — In a sign of growing pressure on Saudi Arabia, Turkey… Continue reading

Utah truck driver is jailed without bond after crash kills 6

HEBER, Utah — A man suspected of driving under the influence remained… Continue reading

A ragged, growing army of migrants resumes march toward US

TAPACHULA, Mexico — A ragged army of Honduran migrants streamed through southern… Continue reading

Postal workers to begin strikes in 4 Canadian cities Monday if deal not reached

OTTAWA — The union representing 50,000 Canada Post employees says it will… Continue reading

Migrant caravan swells to 5,000, resumes advance toward US

CIUDAD HIDALGO, Mexico — Despite Mexican efforts to stop them at the… Continue reading

“I don’t feel real”: Mental stress mounting after Michael

PANAMA CITY, Fla. — Amy Cross has a hard time explaining the… Continue reading

Toronto residents set to vote Monday on the next four years of civic leaders

Toronto’s municipal election campaign, marked by unprecedented provincial interference, ends Monday when… Continue reading

Former PQ minister Lise Payette remembered as role model for female politicians

MONTREAL — Members from across Quebec’s political spectrum gathered at a downtown… Continue reading

Most Read