Running the Talent Search online has many advantages – especially for teachers. However, the pen-and-paper version will be continued for
the time being as many schools do not have the required infrastructure to run the test online.
The Computer Olympiad experimented with an online Talent Search in November 2013. As the pilot project coincided with exam time in high schools, only primary schools took part.
The Online Talent Search will be known as the Beaver Challenge, as it uses the infrastructure and questions of the International Beaver Challenge. The contest which is known as the “Bebras Challenge” in some countries was offered in 25 countries in 2013 and had half a million participants. Thirty-five countries are expected to participate in 2014. (See www.bebras.org).
The online test has a number of advantages over the pen-and-paper Talent Search.
1. Online offers far more creative questions – such as drag-and-drop.
2. The questions are set by an international panel to international standards.
3. The questions come for four age groups
Junior grades 6 and 7
Intermediate grades 8, 9 and 10
Senior grades 11 and 12
4. No marking for teachers. All the marking is automated.
5. As the risk of questions leaking is less, the online contest will be open from 8 a.m. on Monday 10 March to 5 p.m. on Friday 14 March.
6. The contest takes 45 minutes, leaving 15 minutes to settle in beforehand and to tidy up afterwards.
The online challenge offers a number of possibilities (like drag-and-drop) that cannot be duplicated in a pen-and paper test. The questions in the online test will therefore be different from the pen-and-paper test.