In my last blog post I made the assertion that randomizing questions does not affect exam difficulty. In other words, if Person A gets a set of exam questions in one order and Person B gets the same questions but in a different order, I asserted that both exams will be of the same difficulty. … Continue reading Does Question Order Affect Exam Difficulty?
In discussions with clients I notice that some people inadvertently use the terms randomizing and subsetting interchangeably, though they are really quite different with entirely different consequences for exam validity. Randomization means that all test takers get the same questions but in different order. Subsetting means that each test taker gets a different subset of … Continue reading Randomizing vs. Subsetting Exam Questions
I do a lot of exam validation and one of the questions I am frequently asked is: Do we need to validate ALL of our questions and exams? The answer is: It depends on what you are using the questions and exams for. Based on many years of experience here are my best practice guidelines: … Continue reading Validating Questions and Exams. How Much is Enough?
Often, when a product or service has existed throughout our entire lifetime it is hard to imagine what life was like before its invention. I remember asking my parents what they did before there were TVs. Similarly, children growing up today will have a hard time conceiving of a world before the mobile phone or … Continue reading Did Someone Actually Invent the Multiple-Choice Question?
Now that all learning has moved online (traditional eLearning, microlearning. virtual coaching, virtual classrooms, etc.) it’s important to look at the flip side of the learning coin: Assessments. As we’ve discussed many times in this blog there are two types of assessments: Assessments for learning -- sometimes called formative assessments Assessments of learning – sometimes … Continue reading It’s Now More Important Than Ever To Validate Assessments
In our past two posts we examined strategies for using microlearning for (a) delivering new content and (b) creating a sustainment learning strategy. This week we will consider how to use microlearning in the case where there is a large learning event and the goal is to achieve and sustain mastery. Returning to the classic … Continue reading Using Microlearning to Ensure Long Term Mastery
Intela has a variety of evidence-based Microactivities that improve and sustain learning. One of the more popular activities is the Learning Sprint. A Learning Sprint is a flashcard-like exercise in which learners are required to answer questions from an item pool over a period of several days or weeks (exact scheduling can be set by … Continue reading Why Are You Quizzing Me on What I Already Know?
Last week we showed the results of a survey that provided evidence that learners overwhelmingly choose to study for an exam by re-reading the course material, to the exclusion of other more effective study methods. But what about confidence? Who is more confident: learners who restudy or learners who take practice tests? And how does … Continue reading You Have a Test. Have You Studied? Good. Are You Confident? Not So Fast.
Large numbers of studies have demonstrated the benefits of repeated testing. Requiring learners to retrieve and process previously learned information reinforces what they know and strengthens the neural connections, leading to long term retention. Most of these studies use classic experimental design. They split a learning group in two: One group studies in the normal … Continue reading The Benefits of No Stakes Quizzing
By now most of us have bought into the idea that learning needs to be a process, not an event. Without a continuous learning process we get the dreaded post-learning event forgetting effect: But, if we want our learners to be able to apply what they have learned one month, three months or six months … Continue reading Moving the Measurement Goal Posts