News nr. 24 | November/December 2011
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Marking Examinations by Optical Reading

Internal Evaluation and Quality Assurance Multidisciplinary Team (AIGQ)
+ 351217985179  

Computerized management of the process and internal dissemination of the service 

1. Introduction 

The OCR service became available to lecturers of FMUL in the academic year 2010-2011. Acceptance of the service was demonstrated by the execution indicators and the evaluation of the service by users (news@fmul nº 23). 

AIGQ would like to stress that the efficacy attained was also made possible thanks to the involvement of two units from FMUL: The IT Development Team and the Administrative Centres Coordinating Unit. 

2. Registration and management of requests  

The IT Development Team, from FMUL’s Information Technologies Unit, implemented software that enables the registration and management of OCR requests, as well having additional functions. The application includes functions that allow identifying the people requesting the service, the unit of origin, the date of the examination, the number of copies for each key. These features permit users to receive standardized information about the procedure, since each stage is accompanied by information sent to users by email. 

Once users have started the process, they received information (automatically, by email) telling them they have registered their request. 

After the exam grids have been printed, users are informed that the prints are ready for picking up, and they receive an Excel file containing a pre-formatted table where they will put the numbers of the correction key. Afterwards, the number of copies delivered and subsequently returned by users is registered. The platform in the following figure enables AIGQ to manage requests from start to completion very effectively.


2.2 Sending the scanned answer grid to students 
The software also has another feature of great utility in terms of cutting down on paper consumption: it allows sending the scanned answer grid to students by email. After results have been sent to the lecturers, students receive (automatically, by email) the grid with the exam answers. For purposes of remarking exams, the services no longer need to print the document, since the student already has it, and he is responsible for printing it. The following image shows the format of this feature.


3. Internal Dissemination 

The Administrative Centres Coordinating Unit (CPA) has been cooperating with the AIGQ with regard to communicating with users since the implementation of the OCR system. This collaboration includes providing instructions for the correct completion of the answer grids, and assisting users in how to use the system.

By providing administrative support to the activities undertaken as part of the Curricular Units of FMUL, CPA ensures that potential users can become effective users of the OCR system, so that all other parties interested in using it may benefit from it.


The Internal Evaluation and Quality Assurance Multidisciplinary Team thanks and acknowledges the talent of the IT Development team and the active collaboration of the Administrative Centres Coordinating Unit in disseminating this service to all interested parties.

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Prof. Doutor J. Fernandes e Fernandes
Editorial Commitee: Prof. Doutor J. Fernandes e Fernandes, Prof. Doutor Alexandre Ribeiro, Prof. Doutor António Vaz Carneiro, Prof. Doutor João Ferreira, Dr. Luis Pereira
Information Officer: Ana Raquel Moreira
Editorial Team: Ana Maria Silva, Ana Raquel Moreira, André Silva, Lara Ponte, Miguel Andrade, Rui Gomes, Sónia Barroso, Susana Henriques, Tânia Simões
Collaboration: Communication and Image Office - Ana Isabel Gonçalves da Silva, Bruno Moura
Design and Technical Support: UTI 
Design and development: Spirituc