Using student performance to judge the difficulty of examinations


Using student performance to judge the difficulty of examinations

  1. Katherine Roegner* Katherine Roegner obtained her doctorate in Coding Theory (1995–1999) and habilitation in Mathematics Education (2004–2012) from the Technical University Berlin. Her current interests lie in exploring student solution strategies and how these relate to the depth of understanding. She also studies how to use multimedia in learning and teaching to increase the contact time between the teacher and individual students. She has been a member of the MWG of SEFI since 2008, and is also a member of the German League of College Educators, the German Society for Mathematics Education and the German Mathematical Association.

+ Author Affiliations

  1. Institut für Mathematik, Technical University Berlin, Sekr. MA 5-3, Straße des 17. Juni 136, 10623 Berlin, Germany
  1. roegner
  • Received December 2014.
  • Accepted December 2014.


This contribution focuses on a scheme developed to characterize the level of difficulty of an examination in the course ‘Linear Algebra for Engineers’ and on the transfer of the underlying idea to a similar scheme for examinations in the course ‘Analysis I for Engineers’. Using these schemes, it is possible to define standards for examinations without standardizing the examination questions. The proposed schemes depend on experience gained by working with students and on an analysis of student performance in previous examinations.

  • © The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of The Institute of Mathematics and its Applications. All rights reserved. For permissions, please email: journals.permissions

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