Case Study: National High School Graduation Exams Information System – Development and Maintenance

Auriga developed a high school graduation exams information system for one of European countries.

Client

Government agency of education, associated to the Ministry of education of one of European countries.

Business Need

The ministry launched a program to introduce a state-wide high school graduation exams system that would replace entrance exams to the most part of state universities, and thus give the school graduates from all national schools equal access to the system of high-quality higher education. To support planning, exam execution and management and control activities, related to the exams, the agency needed an information system, which would enable the usage of a unified standards set across all schools of the country.

Solution

To deliver this system, a leading system integrator and IT services company was selected by the Agency as a prime contractor. The functions of the prime contractor included the system deployment across the country, the equipment procurement, the implementation methodology and coordinating the work of sub-contractors.

The software development within this project scope was carried out by Auriga as a sub-contractor. The company was chosen as a long-time R&D partner, who had all the necessary technical skills in place and had proved its process and managerial maturity during a number of projects for the prime contractor in previous years, all on schedule and on a high professional level. Auriga team was responsible for the design, development and deployment of a powerful N-tier web-enabled information system, based on a .NET Framework, used for all stages of National High School Graduation Exams.

Auriga’s primary responsibility included the development of the system software, including the delivery of:

  • Distributed N-tire web-based application, covering all aspects of exam planning and execution state wide, with rich and comprehensive web interface that provides access to generating numerous complex reports, and supports all necessary workflows, related to reports and forms, that are generated according to the national standards.
  • ŸHigh volume of elaborated data, “real-time” behavior, along with distributed nature of the system, requested special data storage and access logic to be implemented with very large number of extra highly-optimized structures, queries and stored procedures
  • ŸSupporting systems, such us exam audio and video surveillance software integrated into the main exam system (with corresponding data storage, search and manipulation mechanisms), act as an initial data registration point for oral exams
  • ŸSpecial, embedded software for high performance exam answer sheets scanners. These scanners are used for entering and consequent optic recognition of examinee’s written answers from filled out paper answer sheets.

Results

A powerful web-enabled information system used for all stages of National High School Graduation Exams was developed, enabling graduation examinations (both in written and oral form) all over the country.

The system functionality includes:

  • Ÿ Resource allocation and management
  • Ÿ Exam scheduling and execution
  • Ÿ Exam results registration and accumulation
  • Ÿ Record of students, exam supervisors and experts
  • Ÿ Record of the examination rooms and the grading rooms
  • Ÿ Printing out the answer sheets
  • Ÿ Scanning and recognition of the filled out answer sheets
  • Ÿ Answer sheet recognition consistency check
  • Ÿ Distribution of experts for papers grading
  • Ÿ Record of the objection claims
  • Ÿ Operational and statistical reports
  • Ÿ Printing out the exam certificates
  • Ÿ Audio and video recording of oral examinations, with further processing of the audio and video files

Auriga team has finished the development of all of the tasks within the project scopes. The work results were accepted by the Auriga partner (the primary contractor of the Agency). The system has been successfully implemented statewide, and is used for the National High School Graduation Exams up until today.

Tools and Technologies: Ÿ Microsoft.Net stack for web and desktop applications, MS SQL Server, XF Rendering Server , Microsoft and GNU tool chain for embedded software development