Testing students does not simply boil down to the final process of evaluating the students’ knowledge, but it also represents an effective educational method. This method allows teachers to assess the progress levels by identifying the steps that one must take in order to maximally improve the knowledge and competencies of individual students, as well as on what one should focus when transferring knowledge.

Cambridge International Lower Secondary testing structure enables students to assess and evaluate their knowledge in a precise manner. The focus of testing on this programme is for teachers to gain insight into the current state of students’ competencies. They are thus able to give formative feedback on students’ skills, according to which they give them guidance. This is done by communicating overtly with students, discussing and thoroughly analysing the things that are necessary for students to make progress.

All assessments during the Cambridge International Lower Secondary programme can be combined in any way, depending on the context that fits your needs.

On-the-spot assessment: The quality of feedback

We encourage our students to participate in their knowledge assessment during classes by actively taking part in discussions, open communication and short quizzes at the end of each lesson. International School teachers give constructive advice and mentorship so that students can improve their knowledge and determine in what areas they need more work.

The benefits that this method brings are the following:

  • Available for digital literacy, arts and design, music and physical education
  • Feedback on what is good and what needs improvement
  • Helps students to estimate their own knowledge and improve their efficiency
  • Available throughout the entire school year

Cambridge International Lower Secondary programme offers three types of external tests which are used to evaluate the extent to which the students have mastered the subject matter, and they precisely determine their readiness for advancing onto higher assessment modules.

Progress monitoring: Progression tests

Cambridge International Lower Secondary Progression tests are external means of assessment that are used to assess students’ knowledge and evaluate their skills and subject matter comprehension. The subjects tested in this stadium are the main ones: English as first and second language, Mathematics, and Science. The aim of these tests is to monitor progress in these areas, and they are available on years 7, 8, and 9.

The advantages of Progression tests are the following:

  • They give detailed information on student progress
  • They compare strengths and weaknesses of individual students and groups
  • They have a clear structure and standards of assessment
  • They are updated annually
  • They can be used at any period of a school year

Final accomplishment: Checkpoint tests

At the end of their schooling according to Cambridge International Lower Secondary programme, students take external exams – Checkpoint tests – in main subjects, but also in Global Perspectives. These assessments are evaluated by Cambridge International, and they make personalised reports on student competencies so as to give them additional confidence when they share their results with parents.

Checkpoint tests give the following possibilities:

  • Available for all main subjects, as well as Cambridge Global Perspectives
  • It is monitored how students rank in comparison with international markers
  • Individual and group efficiency is easily measured
  • Schools receive feedback, whereas students obtain a Statement of achievement
  • There are two examination series: May and October
  • They are conducted at the end of Cambridge Lower Secondary programme (Year 9)

Digital literacy: ICT Starters

Cambridge ICT Starters are modules that are used to grade candidates according to their knowledge in information and communication technologies. This module evaluates students according to their abilities to use communication software, process information, shape and develop solutions. This programme is adapted for students of all ages, but is typically used for students aged from 5 to 14.

During the testing within the Cambridge International Lower Secondary curriculum, students go through two module levels – Next steps and On track, while each of the mentioned levels is conducted in two phases. One can obtain a certificate for completion of each of these levels:

ICT StartersStage 1Stage 2
ICT Starters: Next stepsExploring Documents
Exploring Images
Exploring Spreadsheets
Exploring Databases
Exploring Programming
Exploring the Internet
Exploring Email
Exploring Multimedia
ICT Starters: On trackMultimedia for a Purpose
Spreadsheets for a Purpose
Databases for a Purpose
Programming for a Purpose
Website Design for a Purpose
Networks for a Purpose
Video or Animation for a Purpose

Students complete tests in each area on all levels and receive individual reports on success for each phase.

The mentioned assessments concern the results achieved in main subjects at the Cambridge International Lower Secondary programme, while for all other subjects qualified teachers monitor the progress of students’ competencies and knowledge according to Cambridge International standards. All testing is conducted with the aim to efficiently prepare students for the final qualification – the IGCSE certificate (link) at Year 11.

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