Bar-Ilan University | President’s Report 2022

48 15 thousand students took online exams We’ve all been taught that the point of exams is to capture a snapshot of student abilities. One day soon, however, thanks to new digital testing platforms, exam scores combined with big data may also be used by lecturers to hone their teaching styles and emphases. That, at least, is one of the possibilities presented by Bar-Ilan’s newonline testing system, part of theUniversity’s mission to increase educational access to asmany students as possible, andmaximize their potential to succeed. A pioneer in the field of online testing in Israeli academia, Bar-Ilan introduced a platform three years in the making at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. Yet while most universities and colleges returned to in-person exams with the resumption of learning on campus, Bar-Ilan was arguably just getting started, driven by the platform’s range of known and potential benefits. For example, online testing removes the need for readers, an uncomfortable necessity for students with a range of vision impairments. Normative students, too, report finding exams far less stressful when they can control their testing environment. Of course, there’s also the greater ease of evaluation for lecturers and teaching assistants, which in turn leaves themmore time to invest in teaching and mentorship. Beyond the advantages for individuals, however, online testing also offers benefits for the larger Bar-Ilan community. For starters, it allowed studies to continue as planned during the COVID-19 pandemic, and ensures that students who struggle with chronic illness or become new parents can remain part of the student body. Enabling students to take exams remotelywill also allow formore participation inmid-semester international conferences and study programs, as well as for Digital Testing Software