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By Paul Nisbet on Friday 7th January, 2011 at 10:58am
A report on the use of digital papers in 2010 is now available for download. The report contains a lot of interesting (well, to me, anyway) statistics and feedback from staff who used the papers last year.
In 2010, 101 centres made 2000 requests for digital papers on behalf of 675 candidates. Compared with 2009, this represents a 71% increase in the number of requests, a 38% increase in the number of centres, and a 60% increase in the number of candidates. This continues the upward trend since the papers were first trialled in 2006.
While more schools and candidates used the papers for the first time in 2010, the data also shows that most centres which used the papers in previous years made more requests for more candidates. Once a school 'goes digital', it seems the number of candidates increases each year, and the number of digital papers that a pupil uses also increases. This is good news because it shows that the papers are in most cases well received and meeting the needs of pupils.
Centres from 30 of the 32 local authorities requested digital papers, together with 5 colleges and 5 independent schools.
Candidates with dyslexia and specific learning difficulties were the largest group of users (60%) of digital papers, although pupils with a wide range of other difficulties also used them.
Each year SQA send a questiuonnaire to staff who used the papers and Maggie Quinn of SQA has compiled some useful observations which will help SQA and CALL to develop and support use of digital papers.
The report also summarises feedback from a Focus Group meeting held on 29th October 2010, which will also help improve quality of the papers and administration.
The Digital Papers project has been a great success: a really good collaboration between SQA, CALL, schools and pupils. One of the key players has been Sheila Rennie, SQA Manager of Assessment Materials and Publications. Sheila, along with her colleagues Patricia McDonald and Maggie Quinn, has really driven the project along and the uptake of papers is a tribute to her hard work and professionalism. Sheila retired last year and we wish her well.