Densmore Blog


How the CFE is Created - Part 2 of 3

On July 27, 2016

In the first part of this series of blogs, I discussed the first phase of the CFE process: creating and refining the testing instrument. The second phase is marking the CFE and determining which candidates pass.


Marking guides are initially prepared by Board of Examiners (BOE) staff and refined along with the cases. They need to be tested and edited, so there is test marking after the CFE is written but before “live” marking starts.


The BOE chair is in overall charge of the marking centre and is supported by sub-committee members and senior BOE staff. The CFE is marked using a team approach for each case, so there are team leaders and assistant team leaders overseeing the actual team marking. They go through a process of marking test papers to determine what refinements are necessary to the marking guides. Those changes are made before the marking teams arrive.


There is an application process to become a CFE marker. There are many factors considered in hiring the markers including academic performance, regional representation, previous marking experience and personal references. The first CFE was written in 2015, so there would have been markers from the various legacy bodies working together for the first time. 


There is intense monitoring of marking performance by individuals and teams. Without going into the details, let me just say that there is multi-level feedback and statistical tracking to determine any marking concerns. There is constant review and feedback.  There is statistical verification at multiple levels and test papers to ensure group and BOE marking consistency. There is a process of multiple marking by independent markers and arbitration of results. There is also an added borderline review process for candidates with results around the passing standard.


Suffice it to say that the marking process works very well, resulting in very few successful appeals. I appreciate that first-time writers have only seen marking at the course and practice level and may have concerns. I can assure you that CFE marking is far superior to marking you may have seen to date because of the quality control processes that are an essential part of the process. 


The bottom line is that your CFE results will be what your results should be, based on your performance. Focus on the quality of your responses and don’t worry about the marking process. It’s in good hands!


(Bruce Densmore – July 27, 2016)

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