Tests and assessments

Feared by learners, discounted by educational pundits, short-changed by instructional designers, tests are, nevertheless, an essential element of learning. We may call them quizzes, drills, examinations, assessments, competence monitors, or demonstrations of mastery. We may cloak them as games or puzzles. Yet, they remain an essential ingredient for gauging a learner’s progress.

In this section, you can try various examples of test and test instructions. Click one of these examples to learn more:

Pick-one test questions

Pick-one questions let the learner pick just one answer from a list of possible answers. About the example This pick-one example asks learners to make a decision based on a short scenario. If you want to ask several pick-one questions about a subject, or if space is limited, consider using a series of selection lists … Continue reading Pick-one test questions

Click-in-picture test question

If you want to let learners select among visual alternatives, you can present the choices as pictures and have learners indicate their choices by pointing and clicking. Because such questions are used primarily for visual subjects, they are treated as a separate type of question called a “click-in-picture” question. About the example In this example, … Continue reading Click-in-picture test question

Pick-multiple test question

Pick-multiple questions let the learner pick one or more answers from a list of possible answers. About the example This is a graphical pick-multiple example. It asks learners to select multiple bars on a chart to answer the question. Selected bars are highlighted. Go to practice 6.2 to try this example out. This second example … Continue reading Pick-multiple test question

Fill-in-the-blanks questions

Fill-in-the-blanks questions require learners to supply missing words in a paragraph of text or missing items in a table. Fill-in-the-blanks questions are also called cloze questions. Such questions have been used for hundreds of years and are a staple of education. About the examples What’s the gender, above, tests knowledge of French articles. Here is another … Continue reading Fill-in-the-blanks questions

Matching-list questions

Matching-list questions require learners to specify which items in one list correspond to items in another. About the examples In this example, the learner chooses chemicals responsible for the respective colors of autumn leaves. This example was built using PowerPoint’s Trigger effects. We were able to retain these links when we converted the slide to … Continue reading Matching-list questions

Sequence questions

Sequence questions ask learners to put items into a sequence from beginning to end by some rule or according to some principle. Learners are presented with a list of items in an incorrect order. They must move the items to put the items into the right relative positions within the list. About the examples This … Continue reading Sequence questions

Composition questions

Composition questions ask learners to write an essay, draw a picture, or write a song. They ask for an original analysis, opinion, or other piece of work. Composition questions are just scored original-work activities. By far, the most common form is the essay question, but other media can be submitted as well. About the example … Continue reading Composition questions

Performance questions

Performance questions ask learners to write an essay, draw a picture, or write a song. They ask for an original analysis, opinion, or other piece of work. About the example In this example, the learner performs the steps to create a system data source name in a simulation. Each step of the simulation is scored. … Continue reading Performance questions

Feedback don'ts

Do not shout at people if they get something wrong—no flashing headlines or embarrassing noises. About the example How would you like to receive this feedback? The word Failed appears in a blood red color and jiggles on the screen, accompanied by a chorus of boos. Also notice the condescending tone. This example was built … Continue reading Feedback don’ts

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