On automatic assessment and conceptual understanding

Antti Rasila*, Jarmo Malinen, Hannu Tiitu

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


We consider two complementary aspects ofmathematical skills, i.e. procedural fluency and conceptual understanding, from a point of view that is related to modern e-learning environments and computer-based assessment. Pedagogical background of teaching mathematics is discussed, and it is proposed that the traditional book medium has determined much of its historical development, including the classical style of presenting mathematical knowledge. Information technology is likely to be an emerging game changer in learning and teaching ofmathematics, andwe argue that the potential of e-learning platforms extends beyond simple drill exercises to complex problems (having several 'right' solutions) that are expected to improve conceptual understanding. We discuss these ideas referring to experiences and observations froma STACK-based automatic assessment system at Aalto University since 2006. The article is concluded by visions for the future development involving, e.g. learning analytics based on students'answer data.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)149-159
Number of pages11
JournalTeaching Mathematics and its Applications
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2015
Externally publishedYes


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