E-Learning and the Paper Testing: Why the Gap


testing, distance eduaction, technology, learning


It is the last class of the term, and the zoology professor has scheduled this class period to review for the final exam. In the question-and-answer session, a student expresses confusion over an earlier reading in the text. The professor invites the clss to don their 3D glasses as she projects from her laptop a simulated muscle contraction with an animated color overlay that traces the series chemical-induced reactions trigering the contraction. the student, with personal digital assistant (PDA) in hand and computer in lap, manipulates his owncopy of the simulation to the trigger the contraction event and says he now understands. Relieved, he thanks the professor - and then asks, "So I understand it now, watching a 3D animation of the whole process, but how is a test on paper in the testing center goint ot be fair? It's 2D, static, no color, and my hand always cramps when I write too long because I am so used to keyboarding everything."

Original Publication Citation

Howell, S. (2003). E-learning and paper-based testing: Why the gap? Educause Quarterly, 26(4), 8–10.

Document Type

Peer-Reviewed Article

Publication Date


Permanent URL



Educause Quarterly




David O. McKay School of Education


Instructional Psychology and Technology

University Standing at Time of Publication

Associate Professor