Are Information Exams the Next SATs?

    October 30, 2006

The company that produces the Student Aptitude Test is developing a new Information and Communication Technology (ICT) exam that tests skills such as computer proficiency and search engine aptitude, and may soon be as relevant as the SAT itself.

Developed by the Educational Testing Service, the ICT Literacy Assessment tests skills such as sifting through email, scouring an academic database and completing work on business productivity software. Students are given 3 to 5 minutes to complete smaller, single tasks on the exam, and 15 minutes to complete sets of more complex tasks.

Development of the ICT has prompted the the National Forum on Information Literacy (NFIL) to establish an ICT Literary Policy Council, which will review the exam and recommend ways to make it more effective. According to the NFIL the goal of the new council is to determine, which students are proficient and which may need additional ICT literacy instruction or remediation.

Schools throughout the UK have sanctioned a similar exam in recent years, dubbed the GNVQ in Information and Communication Technology (also labelled ICT). Approximately 100,000 British students take the exam annually for placement in IT-oriented vocational programs.

There’s no word yet as to when American schools will embrace the ICT exam, but as such an exam requires mass adoption to be useful it will take some time before it becomes a hallmark of 21st century education.

Via ars technica

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*Originally published at TechFreep

Mike Zazaian is the Editor-in-Chief and Webmaster of, an online publication dedicated to daily technology and science news. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, where he majored in Film and Video studies with a sub-concentration in screenwriting. While only a minority of Mike’s formal education encompassed the technology field, he has worked as a web developer, a freelance web designer, and has been a tech enthusiast for the better part of his life.