Monday, August 27, 2018

Five Essentials of Stellar Learning Quizzes



Do your courses need to include a quiz or a practice activity? Is it fine to build courses that don’t include tests or quizzes? Well, as an educator the choice is totally yours, but providing learners an opportunity to fail at guessing can actually improve learning quality. While, if your learners know the stuff already, quizzes can be a great mechanism to provide them credit for the same.  
If you believe that quizzes can do your learners some good, read on. I am going to talk about the essentials of effective learning quizzes.

Good quizzes have the following in common:

1. They are made of relevant, clearly written, and easily understandable questions.

The quiz questions need to align well with the course objectives. They should focus on the recall of only the material covered in your course.

Additionally, the questions need to be concise; you should omit any unnecessary information that needs learners to spend their time understanding the question correctly. The idea is not to trick the learners, but assess their knowledge.

You could either draft questions manually, or take help of a tool like Quillionz to automatically generate questions from your content using Artificial Intelligence technology.

2. They test the learners at the right time.

Well, the fact is that there is no bad time to quiz your learners. You could quiz them anytime, at the start of the course, during the course, or at the end of the course. But the key is in knowing what purpose each of these time-points serve.

  • Setting a quiz at the start is a great way of apprising learners of what is to come. It might make them curious and more interested in the subject.  An introductory quiz also lets you gauge if learners already know about the topic that is going to be covered. If yes, then you might consider skipping forcing them through the course.  
  • A quiz used during the course can be a good way to assess whether learners need to be re-routed back to the earlier section to understand the material better, or just reinforcing main ideas from that section would help. Such quizzes can be planted every time after logical chunks of content have been presented.  
  • A quiz at the end of course can of course be used to assess learners’ understanding of the entire content presented in the course.

3. They comprise appropriate answer choices.

Answer choices should challenge the learner to think through what they have learned. Of-course if the learner makes the wrong choice, feedback should help them get back on track. More on that in the next point, but as far as answer choices go, go for options that urge the learner to recall the entire concept. A limited set of clear and distinct answer options is all that you need.

Don’t be too inclined towards using too many True or False kind of answer options since they cannot judge the learner’s knowledge levels precisely. Avoid using ‘all of the above’ or ‘none of the above’ as options. Be consistent with the format for all answer options (length, grammatical parallels, etc.) For multiple choice questions, prefer to use serious distractors.

4. They provide meaningful feedback.

Feedback is critical. It can have both motivational and educative value. Providing well-crafted feedback in the moment-of-learning is invaluable. Make sure your feedback is courteous and crisp, yet explains what the correct answer is. Even if the learner answers correctly, your feedback can still reinforce why it is correct.

5. They are presented in a relevant and interesting format.

It is always a good idea to use compelling quiz formats to cater to varied learning styles and to engage everyone well.

You could evaluate different quiz presentation ideas ranging from drag-drop, multiple choice questions, trivia, fill-in type questions, true or false, open-ended questions, flash cards, game-show style quizzes, etc.  


Some of these formats are perfect for digital quizzes while others could be used in both classroom and digital settings. Choose the format that best measures your students’ cognitive ability for that subject. Another factor to consider when selecting a format is how much time the students will have to take the test. Open-ended or descriptive questions might not be appropriate for larger classrooms or situations where a large number of students are involved.

Once you have decided on including a quiz in your learning module and thought through all the above scenarios, you could build it using a quiz building tool or a comprehensive interactivity building tool like Raptivity.  In addition to quizzes, Raptivity provides a plethora of other templates ranging across categories like games, simulations, presentations, and assessments.

How do you build your learning quizzes? Do you follow specific guidelines? Feel free to share your thoughts through comments below.