Tech Rav
Discussions of Jewish EdTech

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Creating Online Quizzes

With the recent research reported by the New York Times that Test Taking Cements Knowledge Better than other alternative forms of assessment, I have been experimenting with different methods to create online tests and quizzes to upload to my blog, wiki, or course management web page. These types of quizzes provide a valuable formative assessment for students while learning a unit although obviously the online mode usually cannot prevent students from "sharing" answers so it should not replace summative in-class assessments.

The most obvious and popular source for creating online quizzes is Google Docs Forms application which I have blogged about extensively earlier. Below is a simple video tutorial for how to create an online quiz using Google Docs:

Google Docs Forms have some obvious advantages:
  • They are easy to use and free, requiring only a Google Login.
  • Many question types can be used including multiple choice, short answer, long answer, or checklist responses.
  • Quizzes can be in both Hebrew and English.
  • The form can navigate to different questions based on the responses to a previous multiple choice question. 
  • Online Quizzes can be embedded on any blog, wiki, or website and can require students to include identifiable information.
  • All answers are automatically submitted to a spreadsheet on the "backend" for teachers to grade the quiz.
Google Docs Forms does have some disadvantages as well:
  • Quiz questions and the order of multiple choice responses cannot be randomly changed for each test taker.
  • Students taking the test cannot receive feedback on right or wrong answers or explanations for why a question in right or wrong. 
  • Teachers cannot easily mark correct answers for grading.
For these reasons, I have been researching other free online quiz solutions. I created a sample quiz on מלכים ב פרק ט which I have embedded below using 3 different quiz sites to compare features. I would recommend that, in addition to reading my comments, you take this quiz using all 3 quiz sites below so you can compare the different user experiences for each.
  2. Advantages:
    • This site allows for very attractive quizzes that can include multi-media such as pictures, audio, and video. 
    • It is also very attractive in its general interface and how it handles Hebrew.
    • Finally, students can log in so their quiz scores can appear on a scoreboard at the end.
    • Scores are not submitted to the teacher for easy grading.
    • Feedback is given immediately by each question instead of giving correct and incorrect answers at the end of the quiz.
    • Only multiple choice questions are allowed.
    2. Advantages:
      • Quizzes can be in multiple formats including multiple choice, fill-in, and free response.
      • Feedback is given at the end of the quiz.
      • Grades for each student are posted for the teacher to access upon login.
      • Unattractive interface.
      • Teachers are not emailed when new quiz responses are posted.
    3. Zoho Challenge
    4. This site is my favorite for a number of reasons:
      • Like ProProfs, quizzes can be in many question formats such as multiple choice and free response but Zoho Challenge also adds a question bank so one can reuse questions from one quiz on a new quiz.
      • The order of the quiz questions can be randomized as well as the order of responses in a multiple choice question.
      • Point totals for each question can be set in advance as well as a timer for how long the quiz should last.
      • The duration for when the quiz is accepting responses can be set in advance as well.
      • Results are given for students at the end of the quiz and teachers can even evaluate the free response questions which are posted for students.

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