New standardised digital assessments aim to engage pupils and reduce teacher workload

Press Release

Wednesday 1 May 2024

A new online assessment product for Key Stage 2 reading and maths, designed to help teachers save time is being launched by NFER this September, starting with Years 3 and 4.

NFER Online Assessments (NOA) provide interactive, standardised tests that are fun and engaging for pupils to use and deliver reliable information for teachers for diagnostic and summative assessment purposes. The test questions have been specifically developed for use in a digital environment, ensuring their accuracy as an assessment tool.

Seventy per cent of all NOA questions are marked automatically, saving teachers valuable time. The remaining 30 per cent are teacher-marked to ensure there is teacher-level insight into ‘open-ended' and ‘show your working’ questions.

NOA also has an easy-to-use, in-built reporting tool which teachers and school leaders can use to monitor pupil and class-level attainment across specific curriculum areas such as addition and subtraction for maths or making inferences from texts for reading.

Pupils will engage with age-appropriate questions while NFER’s interactive guide, NOA the Panda, will help them navigate their way through the test.

One primary school involved in the trial of NOA earlier this year commented: “It was a very efficient system and easy to use. Children were able to work independently. The data produced was useful and effective. We were very impressed.”

Covering reading and maths curricula across autumn, spring, and summer terms, NOA has been standardised by using over 30,000 completed assessments to provide a robust sample size for data and reporting purposes.

From today, Wednesday 1 May, teachers can sign-up to receive their own video sample of the new online assessments. NFER will also be offering demonstration webinars of the product on Tuesday 21 and Thursday 23 May.

From Monday 3 June, schools can also gain access to their own demo account of NOA, where they can try out sample tests and use the NOA reporting tool to sample the various reports and filters.

Alan Read, Chief Digital Officer at the National Foundation for Educational Research said:

“We're very proud of NOA's quality and can't wait to see it being used in schools from September. Our expert assessment designers have worked with schools to develop onscreen assessments that are easy to use, engaging for pupils and save teacher's administration and marking time. 

“The standardised, termly tests provide an accurate evaluation of achievement, misconceptions and progress over time at individual pupil, group, class and school or MAT level via a range of easy-to-use reports. The demo available to schools will give users a real taste of the KS2 maths and reading suite.”

NFER’s Years 5 and 6 NOA offering will launch in autumn 2025 following the collection of trials data for the autumn, spring, and summer assessments which will take place during the 2024-2025 academic year.