Class Saathi Saved 45,600 Human Hours in Conducting One Large Scale Assessment

Large Scale Assessments (LSAs) are instrumental in leading some revolutionary changes in the education sector. More and more agencies working in the education space are relying on LSAs to test, formulate and implement policy change.

What are Large Scale Assessments and why have they received so much prominence in the recent past? More importantly, how does Class Saathi change the game in the LSA arena and how beneficial is using it in the field of education? We will explore all these questions in this article!

Composite school students in Varanasi using Class Saathi for quick assessments
Students in K-8 classroom in Varanasi school using Class Saathi for quick assessments

We will start by understanding the implementation and purpose of Large Scale Assessments (LSAs). To do this with clarity, we will also talk about the expenses, both material and human, that agencies have to incur to conduct LSAs. 

Large Scale Assessments involve conducting standardized tests on a significant sample size. They differ from regular assessments or exams as they do not evaluate individual student proficiency.

Rather, it is an instrument through which organizations and policymakers test the learning achievement of students in a bid to understand the efficiency and effectiveness of education policy and other crucial domains that govern the everyday functioning of schools.

Save time and money with Class Saathi
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The monetary investment required in successfully conducting large scale assessments is very high. Let us analyse the costs here a little bit –

Let’s consider a scenario where a school has 30,000 students and needs to conduct LSAs in two subjects, Maths and Language, for both primary and secondary categories of students. We will then collate the costs and other non-monetary expenses involved. Additionally, we are also going to assume that ​​the average teacher salary is 50,000 INR/month or Rs. 225 per hour for standard 8 hour/28 day’s work month.

Next, we will explore the expenses incurred by schools at different stages of LSAs, from planning to execution.

a. The set-up process: Assuming that each paper takes 5 hours to draft and create, we are looking at 40 hours that go into only curating question papers for two subjects across two categories. Taking the above teacher salary into consideration, it will cost schools ₹18,000 alone to create the question paper.

b. Printing costs: If the cost of printing a paper is ₹0.5 and Maths has a total number of 10 pages and Language has a total of 20, the total amount of money spent printing question papers for students in primary and secondary school amounts to a whopping ₹18,00,000.

c. Grading: Assuming that a teacher takes 10 minutes to grade each paper, we can safely assume that a total amount of 40,000 hours is spent correcting 60,000 papers. In monetary terms, it would cost an organisation/school ₹9,000,000.

d. Documentation and Analysis: Here again we will operate on the assumption that teachers spend 40,000 hours simply documenting and analysing the results from the LSAs. in monetary terms, it would cost a school or organisation a mind-blowing sum of ₹4,50,000 at this stage.

e. Reporting: Assuming reporting takes 3 hours per school and there are 100 students per school, the human cost associated with reporting is 3,600 hours of labour or ₹8,10,000.

So, all in all it takes about ₹12,078,000 which is equivalent to 45,680 human hours not including the logistics of it all.

With Class Saathi, here’s how you will be saving time and money-

Class Saathi saves over 575 times the human hours
Human Hours Comparison: Save 575 times the time

a. The set-up process: Since teachers will still be giving us the content needed for the assessment, we will calculate the same amount as prescribed by the non-Saathi method. So let us assume that it takes ₹18,000 during the drafting process as well.

b. Deployment stage: TagHive Inc. offers LSA capabilities for a mere sum of ₹25 per student per assessment, which means for 30,000 students, the price is ₹3,000,000 and we require only 80 hours to deploy, use and analyse data points.

The TagHive Assessments platform saves over 4x the money and 575x the human hours required for just 1 year of assessments for 30,000 students.

Class Saathi saves over four times the money
Cost Comparison: Save 4 times the money

However, this also does not account for the fact that through digitized assessments, organisations reduce the chances of using forged or erroneous data to formulate policies that can benefit students. What this method also does is help schools and other organisations reduce their carbon footprint by going digital. This also means that Class Saathi is helping people make eco-friendly decisions by discouraging the use of unnecessary stationery and most importantly paper.

Want to know more about our Large Scale Assessment platform? Write to us at [email protected].

Why is LSA so Important in India?

Image by tjevans from Pixabay

The name “Large Scale Assessments” suggests that these assessments are conducted on a large sample size. Researchers draw inferences on areas like policy impact and test accountability in the education field by administering these tests on a significant number of people for data collection purposes.

LSAs have gained traction in the last decade as most countries of the world and education systems are working towards improving academic performances at a policy level. Now, this brings us to a major question – why are Large Scale Assessments important?

In the Indian context, let’s paint a picture of the education system. Various bodies at the district, state, and national levels preside over over a million public schools. Let us take for granted that the national education authority has its headquarters in New Delhi. How can officials in Delhi monitor the efficiency of their policy in a district of, let’s say, Kerala, which is one of the Southern states in the country? Through Large Scale Assessments of course.

Large Scale Assessments by Class Saathi

LSAs standardize assessments based on specific metrics to measure and collate important information for researchers and policymakers. These assessments, also known as Impact Assessments, typically collect student data in two phases: 

  1. Before Policy Implementation.
  2. After Policy Implementation, usually towards the end of an academic year.

The logic is very simple then – what were student performances like before the implementation of the policy and what is it after the implementation of it. Before Large Scale Assessments go live, researchers also conduct pilot tests in smaller groups and draw expected inferences from the test group.

So, if the findings from the LSAs in any district or subgroup are widely deviant, then researchers can also find out what channels in the education ecosystem are not performing their duties properly. 

As you can see, it is a method of assessing students with the aim of testing the efficiency of the education system that serves them. How wildly important is that?

India has legislated education as a system that is free and compulsory for all. When the stakes are so high and when 250 million students in India are accessing the public education system, the need for accountability and quality is of top priority.

Let us understand now how LSAs benefit students. The public education system serves students across the country with quality education in a bid to equalise opportunities available to everybody, even in some of the most rural and remote parts of the country.

Our strength lies in the numbers – when there are so many students accessing education in the country, it increases the human resource index, potentially opening up the space to provide professionals with high skill value. This is aspirational of course. 

LSAs provide a framework of observation for researchers to enhance the quality of the educational experience and ensure comprehensive coverage of all students under this scheme.

Students feel more empowered and confident when they know there is an authority in charge of guaranteeing them fair and equitable access. These bodies also make it a point to drive reforms and implement changes that can benefit students immediately.

Having said all of that, one thing must be clear to everybody by now – this LSA business is very time intensive and requires a huge human resource capital. People have to manually administer the tests from district to district and the data collation also happens manually.

After collating the reports, another group of professionals analyzes them before sending them to higher authorities. Simply administering and collating the data requires the involvement of three separate groups of professionals.

Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

With the introduction of the National Education Policy 2020, there is a grave need to cast Large Scale Assessments throughout the country. The major challenge lies in accessing human resources during restricted movement due to the pandemic. It is difficult to reach students, schools are not fully functional, and officials have been instructed to stay where they are.

We must also accept that the pandemic has been extremely expensive for the country and has affected all public spending to make matters grimmer. Additionally, it is also important to note that manual data gathering leads to high error counts. How do we ensure that LSAs can happen efficiently through all these challenges?

We at TagHive Inc. have the answer for you! We have built a flexible system that enables the formulation and implementation of Large Scale Assessments. Our platform is content, grade, curriculum and language agnostic. We create fields to accommodate the diverse requirements emerging from the field and we enable the implementation of LSAs in a short period of time.

All students, teachers and school administrators need to do is download our app and log in using the credentials provided to implement the test. Post the implementation, we collate reports and analyses based on the requirements prescribed.

So, what are we offering here? We offer a platform that is fully customizable to fit all the criteria mentioned. We also collate, report and analyse the data coming in to show policymakers, educators and researchers vital information at both macro and micro levels. 

We entered the field of LSAs through our partnership with Kaivalya Education Foundation by providing them with a platform to conduct Large Scale Assessments in two phases: 

  1. Baseline.
  2. Endline.

Over 10,000 assessments were conducted, analysed and reported on in a matter of months. Find more details on the project here.

Problems will happen regardless of a smooth functioning global environment. As the saying goes, “adversity is the mother of all invention”, and keeping this in mind, we have created technology that surmounts all these challenges and so much more!

Want to conduct Large Scale Assessments by saving time and increasing efficiency? Connect with us for more information, demos or partnership opportunities. Write to us at [email protected]!