If you ran the great speeches of Winston Churchill, or the prose of Ernest Hemingway through new computerized grading software used to assess A levels in the UK, they’d fail. I hate to say this, but the computer can never be wrong. I know because it told me that.
Churchill’s speeches, Hemingway’s style and Golding’s prose would not have been appreciated by a new computerised marking system used to assess A level English.
The system, which is a proposed way of marking exam papers online, found that Churchill’s rousing call to “fight them on the beaches” was too repetitive, with the text using the word “upon” and “our” too frequently.
His reference to the “might of the German army” lost him marks because the computer assumed that Churchill had intended to say “might have”, instead of using “might” as a noun.
Graham Herbert, deputy head of the Chartered Institute of Educational Assessors, said: “The computer was limited in its scope. It couldn’t cope with metaphor and didn’t understand the purpose of the speech.
In regards to that last: isn’t it lovely that the computer isn’t any better than the students?