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eVIVA Project

eVIVA was an innovative “blue skies” pilot project at Ultralab which used mobile phones, voice recognition technology and the Internet to support formative and summative assessment. The two-year project ran from 2002 to an end in July 2004. Orange were our technology partners (where are they now in Education?):

eviva screen

The project started when I saw a QCA advert seeking bidders for the job of assessing ICT Key Stage capabilities - and after applying for the spec I was horrified - it didn't seem to me to be the right direction to take at all with its simulations of Word ("Can you format text? - how?"). And I couldn't see how you could do it without the learners' voices being a significant component. So I wrote a (for me) pretty sniffy letter saying so and to their credit the Qualifications and Curriculum Aurhority said "OK, how would you do it then matey?" or words to that effect - but they said it with funding!

Short version (detailed reports linked below) is that in our eVIVA project children used competency statements to set their own targets, used a web environemtn to lay down milestones that evidenced their progress towards those targets and at the end of the time phase, their mobile phone would ring for a phone based Viva.

It certainly didn't fetishise technology. One teacher said: "It is interesting that most of the things I have learned as a result of doing the project are about how children see learning – I didn’t expect that to be the focus. I expected it to be about the electronic nature of the activity."

Short version of the research is: it worked, indeed the children by and large outperformed the targets that schools would have set for them. Voice recognition based, mobile phone eneabled, this was very much seen a s future direction for e-assessment and for a loing time you could not vist QCA without being given, excitedly, a leaflet about eVIVA... but then folk changed there, people moved on and...

Rather bravely, the name eVIVA, stood for "electronic virtual ipsative valid assessment".

Anyway here are links to:

the report from Ultralab for QCA at the end - Lesley McGuire was project manager for most of the project - Sue Walton the hero at QCA.

QCA's quick fact sheet handout

a BBC news bulletin - sorry about the quality - which shows how sympathetic the media were to exams on the phone, so to speak.

another indicative screen from the web based environment

Two interesting little cameo memories:


page last revised Friday, January 8, 2010 6:59 PM