National Examining Board for Dental NursesImage result for NEBDN

Examining boards come under close scrutiny with regards to equality and impartially towards students. In order to retain their standing within the sector, the NEBDN must ensure that examination practices reduce the possibility for errors to be made by examiners and administrators




Since its foundation in 1943 the National Examining Board for Dental Nurses (NEBDN), which is a registered charity managed by a board of trustees, has become the most widely recognised awarding body for dental nurses in the United Kingdom.

The NEBDN carry out several types of examinations throughout the year including Objective Structured Clinical Examinations (OSCEs) twice every year.

The Problem

The NEBDN’s OSCE examinations require approximately 35,000 sheets of paper and 200 members of staff, therefore are very expensive to run. The potential for human error when examiners hand mark this number of exam papers is huge and which in turn affects the administration costs for monitoring and analysing the examination papers and results.

The NEBDN aim to modernise their examination practices in order to make them more cost-effective and credible. Therefore their long-term aim is to move to a completely paper-less system whereby examiners mark candidates using handheld devices or tablets which do not allow for multiple or blank marks to be made.


How Trax UK resolved the problem

Investing in e-marking software, provided by Trax UK, means we can significantly lower the running costs for OSCE's in the long term

Trax UK’s Android Application provides the perfect platform for an organisation such as the NEBDN where modernisation is necessary in order to stay relevant.    

There are several aspects which are paramount to this type of application including; the user-friendliness, the interface, and the facilities provided. The back of house design is also imperative for this type of application which must ensure that results captured are not lost. Some of the NEBDN’s sites do not have Wi-Fi access and to allow the system to back-up data, Trax UK’S programmers have designed a unique three way back up system whereby, the data is stored on the device’s internal memory as well as an SSD card, which is used to act as a secondary backup medium (the data is written to both the device’s internal memory and to the SSD card). Once an internet connection is established the data can then be downloaded to the web servers thus giving a third back up option. If no internet is available then the SSD card may also be removed and the information can be directly transferred onto the OSCE administrators’ computer or laptop to analyse the results.  

Following a trial of the Online OSCE module from Trax UK, whereby a whole centre was used, covering two floors with a total of ten circuits and 17 stations on each, the NEBDN has opted for the new Trax UK Android Application in place of the paper-based system for several of their sites in summer 2014 with the aim of moving toward a completely paperless system for 2016.