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September 18, 2020, 11:39:57 pm

Author Topic: COVID-19 and Education  (Read 33242 times)  Share 

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brothanathan

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #270 on: August 07, 2020, 12:46:02 pm »
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So this is how that will work:

Schools definitely have a clear picture of what people could've done if not for what's occurred. Here we come character references..  :-\

The Cat In The Hat

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #271 on: August 07, 2020, 12:51:00 pm »
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So then what happens for the people who already needed special consideration? Who therefore talked to teachers last year saying, This is what I'm gonna be like next year? Who therefore the teachers already expect not to do as well? The ones where the teacher handed back a decent grade saying that they were very pleasurably surprised by the mark? Teachers who maybe still think of these kids as coasters this year from circumstances outside their control?
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s110820

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #272 on: August 07, 2020, 03:02:48 pm »
+6
Hey everyone!

I'm not a VCE student but I would like to let you know that the Victorian government have just posted an update about the COVID-19 situation in terms of education. If you would like to read it, I have linked it below: https://www.9news.com.au/national/victoria-year-12-vce-special-consideration-atar-coronavirus-lockdown/f6a7235a-cf8a-4709-8583-6cee216ce19b

I'm not exactly sure how they are going to calculate the VCE ATARs just based on individual assessment but I'm sure that this may help ease some anxiety around graduating this year.

Hopefully, this helps :)

Have a great weekend and kind regards,

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Sine

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #273 on: August 07, 2020, 05:43:00 pm »
+14
It seems like they are selling it as a win-win for everyone when in reality given the way VCE is set up it really can't be.

They say students will be "individually assessed" quite a bit which I think can be a bit misleading if someone is just reading headlines. I think it is good that they are looking at each student's individual circumstances and how the pandemic has impacted everyone but in the end, everyone still gets an ATAR which compares each student against the rest of the state.

The biggest problem with the changes imo are the following:
Quote
Teachers will be asked where they rank their students now and where they would have ranked them if it was not for COVID-19.
This is never going to be done well for everyone. Obviously those with a strong relationship with their teachers will benefit quite a bit.

From this, those students who adapted well and possibly outperformed what their teacher's expectations were at the start of the year may be disadvantaged, same goes for those students who maybe didn't do too well in year 11 but focused in for year 12 thus exceeding expectations.

TigerMum

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #274 on: August 07, 2020, 06:04:49 pm »
+12
It seems like they are selling it as a win-win for everyone when in reality given the way VCE is set up it really can't be.

They say students will be "individually assessed" quite a bit which I think can be a bit misleading if someone is just reading headlines. I think it is good that they are looking at each student's individual circumstances and how the pandemic has impacted everyone but in the end, everyone still gets an ATAR which compares each student against the rest of the state.

The biggest problem with the changes imo are the following:This is never going to be done well for everyone. Obviously those with a strong relationship with their teachers will benefit quite a bit.

From this, those students who adapted well and possibly outperformed what their teacher's expectations were at the start of the year may be disadvantaged, same goes for those students who maybe didn't do too well in year 11 but focused in for year 12 thus exceeding expectations.
I 100% agree. I personally think it's ridiculous to suggest that teachers can move people's ranks around based on their perceived impact of COVID-19 on individual students. It's ironic that every time they introduce something that is supposed to "alleviate the stress" of students or to "ensure that no one will be disadvantaged", it immediately makes me feel more stressed because we are now leaving things up to subjective judgement by teachers rather than consistency across the state.    That said, I think one of the reasons why they can present it as a win-win is that, barring a massive turning point in the global vaccine hunt, the COVID-19 situation is going to completely block international students from coming to Australian universities next year, leaving heaps of places for domestic students, as long as they meet minimum entry requirements.

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heids

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #275 on: August 07, 2020, 07:19:34 pm »
+8
My immediate thoughts when I heard it agree with the above.  It feels like it's being presented as a generous salvation from on high, when really it changes little and possibly causes more problems.

An ATAR is not an objective exam score - it's a percentile, a comparison or ranking of people within the same system.  The same number of people will get 99.95s and 88.30s and 64.25s under Covid-19 conditions as would have in normal years.  Maybe the average score on the same exam is 60% this year rather than 70% in normal years - but people's ATARs remain the same.  ATARs are also state-based not national, so we're not disadvantaging Victorians compared with Queenslanders, for example.

I understand that some people are far more significantly affected by this than others, but that's always the case.  All you're doing is shuffling round the factors that affect comparative rankings - now it's based more on subjective teacher relationships and expectations than actual performance.  Way to put an unjustifiable burden on already-stretched teachers!

Perhaps the same schools that are more disadvantaged due to poorer online teaching and systems will also have teachers less able to write convincing justifications.

That said, I think one of the reasons why they can present it as a win-win is that, barring a massive turning point in the global vaccine hunt, the COVID-19 situation is going to completely block international students from coming to Australian universities next year, leaving heaps of places for domestic students, as long as they meet minimum entry requirements.

I know *nothing* about this, but I imagine the number of places in each course are based partly on projected employment needs in different industries.  International students may be given extra places because they're more likely to seek employment in other countries and not overburden our workforce (and make things cheaper for the govt as they pay full fee!)  But no idea.
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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #276 on: August 07, 2020, 07:39:48 pm »
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Would this affect non-year 12 students studying a 3/4 subject this year?
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eloisegrace

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #277 on: August 07, 2020, 07:56:32 pm »
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Would this affect non-year 12 students studying a 3/4 subject this year?
I'm in the exact same boat. I am under the impression that it will, as for each subject you are ranked against your cohort, while the ATAR is a rank of aggregates.

Can someone please confirm or deny this? I am very confused tbh  ???
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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #278 on: August 07, 2020, 09:36:44 pm »
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From this, those students who adapted well and possibly outperformed what their teacher's expectations were at the start of the year may be disadvantaged, same goes for those students who maybe didn't do too well in year 11 but focused in for year 12 thus exceeding expectations.
I was thinking that! I've outperformed it seems, so disadvantages :'(
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homeworkisapotato

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #279 on: August 07, 2020, 09:57:34 pm »
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I'm a little confused.. how are students who have outperformed and exceeded expectations possibly disadvantaged?
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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #280 on: August 07, 2020, 10:07:54 pm »
+3
I'm a little confused.. how are students who have outperformed and exceeded expectations possibly disadvantaged?

I'm not sure how right I am, but because everyone is getting special consideration, and atars are a ranking, it wouldn't really mean anything unless they boost the scores of the people who haven't been doing well in isolation, which would be the same as bringing down the scores of people doing well, since it's a ranking?
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homeworkisapotato

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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #281 on: August 07, 2020, 10:17:02 pm »
+2
Oh, that makes sense! They said that the considerations are individualised, and they'll also ask teachers. Idk about ALL but most teachers should be able to look at their students' unit 3 sacs and get an idea of how they would have performed throughout the year if corona didn't happen, right? Maybe VCAA will use the special considerations combined with what the teachers say to give some people varying levels of considerations. So maybe, if a student didn't do well in isolation and their teacher thinks they didn't really try/ do well in unit 3 the student won't get consideration? Contrastingly, if a student did really well but suffered from depression or had to manage their family in iso, one would think they also would get special consideration?
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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #282 on: August 08, 2020, 07:17:32 am »
+2
So then what happens for the people who already needed special consideration? Who therefore talked to teachers last year saying, This is what I'm gonna be like next year? Who therefore the teachers already expect not to do as well? The ones where the teacher handed back a decent grade saying that they were very pleasurably surprised by the mark? Teachers who maybe still think of these kids as coasters this year from circumstances outside their control?

This train of thought really is a deep-dive down the rabbit hole of a thought process - any way you can voice your concern a little more clearly? Because as is I have no idea what you're worried about, sorry

I 100% agree. I personally think it's ridiculous to suggest that teachers can move people's ranks around based on their perceived impact of COVID-19 on individual students. It's ironic that every time they introduce something that is supposed to "alleviate the stress" of students or to "ensure that no one will be disadvantaged", it immediately makes me feel more stressed because we are now leaving things up to subjective judgement by teachers rather than consistency across the state. That said, I think one of the reasons why they can present it as a win-win is that, barring a massive turning point in the global vaccine hunt, the COVID-19 situation is going to completely block international students from coming to Australian universities next year, leaving heaps of places for domestic students, as long as they meet minimum entry requirements.

You say that like our state education system already has consistency and we've just removed it ::). There is a much bigger problem with the blocking of international students, though - and that's how the universities are going to stay afloat. Right now, they RELY on international students coming in and paying their ridiculous fees to remain profitable - without ANY international students, there's going to be a large strain on the system. Particularly with the stupid new degree costs being introduced by the Morrison government - they're literally asking universities to take more students while being paid less in their most expensive degrees to run. And like, before someone jumps on the whole "you're just a STEM elitist" - it's just a fact that it's cheaper to run tutorials and lectures that at most just require a shared computer lab than it is just to maintain the equipment required for STEM teaching (with one notable exception in mathematics, which tbh costs less than some HESS subjects and is probably on par with their average). Universities will be struggling in the years to come.

TBF, these are concerns you - as potential tertiary students - won't have to worry about short-term, and you'll probably be safe in being able to get the degree you want with just the normal level of concerns anyone doing year 12 has had to deal with. I am interested to see how the clearly-in ATARs are affected by the "carrot and stick" approach the Morrison government is taking with degree costs.

Perhaps the same schools that are more disadvantaged due to poorer online teaching and systems will also have teachers less able to write convincing justifications.

We can only hope that low SES schools, and definitely areas where the NBN hasn't been rolled out (not that the NBN is even good internet lol), will be considered given that those areas are just flat out going to be less prepared for internet-based learning than metropolitan Melbourne. However, I'm unsure about those teachers being able to be less convincing - it doesn't take technical ability to be a convincing person (see Trump), and definitely if any of them can make it clear their own miserable understanding of online systems, that tbh would probably make the Government see the teachers as some who probably adapted poorly, and so try to raise those students scores accordingly.

I know *nothing* about this, but I imagine the number of places in each course are based partly on projected employment needs in different industries.  International students may be given extra places because they're more likely to seek employment in other countries and not overburden our workforce (and make things cheaper for the govt as they pay full fee!)  But no idea.

So like, my understanding (as someone who as worked with people in admissions) is that the amount of places being offered is literally limited by how many students the university can accept. Sounds like backwards logic, but the point is that they literally take EVERYONE they can - the university doesn't consider things like projected employment in areas, they consider how many students they can physically fit into classes without losing money. And tbf, that's not necesarrily a BAD approach when you consider things like less and less people are getting jobs directly related to their undergraduate degrees (something like only 40% of science graduates at Monash have a job in STEM, with a disproportionate amount of astrophysics majors being hired as accountants). The university has no idea what you'll do with the degree they give you, so why restrict numbers when that has no bearing on what job you may actually end up taking?

You may think that more specialised degrees have a higher retention rate - and AFAIK that's correct, but the different isn't as big as you'd think. Here's some census data I found from the US, and interestingly it looks like something as little as 33% of students with engineering majors ended up being engineers (note that the US follows a unimelb-like approach - students don't study a Bachelor of Engineering, they'll instead study a Bachelor of Science and major in engineering. While it differs by university, typically in the US you study arts or science, and those are your choices, the major you take being essentially what your degree is in, so that's what you've gotta be looking at). Yes, the fact that this is US data does mean it's not directly comparable to our situation in Australia, but it can still be informative - but I'd love to see a similar graph for Australia if anyone can find it





On another note, everyone is discussing these changes as if what they're going to do is just scale each student, similar as to is already done with study scores. Has there actually been official word that THIS is how they'll handle the situation, or is that just assumption by everyone? It could simply be that all they'll do is grant special consideration for students as required, and most likely the biggest thing that'll happen is a group of students will get extra exam time for example, or some will have individual SAC marks changed (eg, we know Johnny's computer crashed during SAC 2 for further maths, so we're going to instead give him an average score for that SAC), etc., which IMHO wouldn't be that bad a way of handling it, and would definitely account for issues with remote-based learning without discounting students who have managed to do well despite these odds.
« Last Edit: August 08, 2020, 07:21:36 am by keltingmeith »
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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #283 on: August 09, 2020, 01:55:21 pm »
+1
I feel like it's just a 'bandage' for the recent petition to cancel exams altogether. Considering that ATAR is just a ranking anyways, if everyone is 'special' then wouldn't that mean no one is special. I'm particularly doubtful about teachers ranking their students based on what they think they would be ---> which is really subjective. I was hoping that they could consider other more objective things like how people performed in year 11.
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Re: COVID-19 and Education
« Reply #284 on: August 09, 2020, 02:01:24 pm »
+2
I was honestly impacted by covid even before the start of term 1, there were already a very small number of cases in Australia at the time. I was extremely paranoid before the start of term 1 because all of my friends had just flown back from China, and my school had scheduled year 12 camp in the first week of school (remind you that there were no quarantine of any sorts for international travellers at the time). As a result I didn't attend school for the first two weeks, which adversely affected my study even before we went into remote.

I guess what I'm trying to say is: I just don't think it makes sense for your year 12 teachers to predict where you would be, as they have barely seen your real potentials without the influence of covid. Wouldn't it make a lot more sense to consider year 11 results or opinions from your year 11 teachers?
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