This is how they reduced the failure rate.

This is how they reduced the failure rate.

National Partial Exam

Some students who say they've fallen in love with mathematics say, well, mathematics as a subject, says university lecturer Mette Nielsen.

Students in Harstad’s online and group teacher education programme meet virtually for three days each semester. Then, among other things, they work a lot with concrete and practical plans. Here, students explore the relationship between the diameter and circumference of a circle.


National Partial Exam

  • that it The Ministry of Education and Science decides which study programmes and subjects will be subject to the national examination.
  • definitely It conducts national partial examinations for nursing education, primary school teacher education, and master's education in child care.
  • National The partial examination is considered a tool that will contribute to developing the quality of teaching, so that different educational institutions across the country learn from each other and maintain a certain quality.
  • National The intermediate examination in mathematics for student teachers is held twice a year, in May and November. There are approximately 1,800 students, distributed across 12 institutions and about twenty study centers. There are more study programs in primary school teacher levels 1 to 7 that hold regular examinations in the spring than in the fall.
  • Results In recent years, the fall has been somewhat weaker, but some of this can be explained by the fact that more credit tests are administered in the fall. So comparing the spring and fall numbers directly can be somewhat misleading.

source: definitely

Student teachers at the Arctic University (UiT) in Norway's UiT in Harstad perform very well in the national partial examination in mathematics. The exam, which is supposed to have a high failure rate – Although things have gone somewhat better this year. – It's something many math students dread. But at Harstad, only two out of 17 failed.

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In the fall of 2022, UiT started an online and group training offer for primary school teachers in Harstad. The students have now finished their second year of study and thus completed the national exam.

“This academic year, I spent four full days on physical maths and ten and a half days on digital,” says university lecturer Mette Nielsen.

She is one of two people responsible for teaching mathematics at Harstad.

Nielsen says that subject teachers in all subjects taught at Harstad worked together, and that they worked a lot with the classroom culture.

-This makes students dare to make mistakes in mathematics.

Admission Requirements

35 teacher training courses exempted from grade requirements

Close monitoring

In addition to the fact that students in Harstad are doing well, they are also satisfied. This is shown, among other things, by the study scale. The study ranks first among Norwegian primary school teacher training programmes. When you look at how satisfied students are overall with education.

– Do good results have anything to do with the type of students they have?

“It may be partly the case,” says Carrie-Anne Sather, who is responsible for primary school teacher education from Years 1 to 7 at UiT.

– Many of these students are adults, some of whom work or have worked at the school. I know some of them have thought, “Now comes the education offer, now I get the opportunity.”

It is not just pure mathematics that students are tested on, but mathematics is taught, which means they have to explain and illustrate it, not just calculate.

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— In the digital groups, I use a tool called a class notebook. Here the students work together in groups of three, and I, as the subject teacher, observe how the students do the calculations; how they think, argue and present evidence. We can give them feedback during the process, and after the meetings they can check their understanding of the tasks and we can check what they have understood, says Mette Nielsen.

– We have students who say they hate math. But then I see that those who choose math as an extra subject are exactly that.

Teacher Training Courses

“Everyone” wants student teachers to get more training.

Emphasis on relationships

Regarding the scale of the study, Carrie Ann Sather said that subject teachers in the different subjects collaborated closely in planning and developing teaching at Harstad.

“We are confident that the fact that we are so closely aligned makes education better and more beneficial for students,” she said.

It's the same thing Sather asks when she has to explain good math results.

– When I have physical meetings, I emphasize creating good relationships. Students should interact, and they should learn together.

Since the study is online and based on grouping, there is mandatory digital teaching every week. Students are also given specific tasks, such as asking three questions they still have after reading the syllabus.

Good results on campus too.

Nokut director Christine Vinje said, in relation to the publication of national figures in June, that average scores rose on the national partial test in mathematics.

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– There is reason to believe that better outcomes are linked to institutions working to promote training, Viney said at the time.

At UiT, students on the Tromsø campus also achieve good results in the national exam. Here the failure rate is 11.1.

In Tromsø, there are 5-10 primary school teacher training students who sit the exam, and overall the failure rate for this group is lower than 1-7. However, Tromsø is in second place, only bettered by Hogskolen BA Vestlandet in Sogndal.

— The studies in Tromsø are on campus, and are set up differently than in Harstad. But one works well in our mathematics department. The whole teacher training is oriented towards education, but the focus is on the importance of school and how students think, says Sather.

Dalila Awolowo

Dalila Awolowo

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