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Challenge Your Students, Don't Trick Them

Assessing student learning is harder than it may seem. When planning test, quizzes, or other assessments, use these tricks to write challenging rather than trick questions.

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Challenge Your Students, Don't Trick Them

  1. 1. DON’T Your Students CHALLENGE ThemTrick 5 Five Tips for Writing Challenging Rather Than Trick Questions Use a test blueprint. It ensures that each item evaluates an important concept or skill. Make your tests open-book, open-note. Tell students they can bring to the test anything they like, except a friend or the means to communicate with one. Using open-book, open-note tests forces you to eliminate items based on simple knowledge that students can look up.Your test will include only items that help develop deeper comprehension and thinking skills. Create interpretive exercises. They encourage thinking skills such as application and analysis. Build items around common misconceptions. Many people, for example, think that plants get nutrients only from soil and water, not air; this misconception can become the basis of an effective botany test question. Evaluate your test results. Revise any misleading or unnecessarily difficult items before including them in another test. Excerpt from Assessing Student Learning: A Common Sense Guide,Second Edition, by Linda Suskie ISBN: 978-0-470-28964-8 384 pages