As we’ve seen, the Moodle quiz engine is a powerful, flexible tool for monitoring and diagnosing a student’s understanding of certain types of knowledge. Using this tool effectively can boost your course’s effectiveness and promote student performance. While a computer-scored quiz is a different evaluation than more open-ended assessments, it does give valuable insight into student thinking, especially when you use good strategies and a little creativity.
Of course, using the quiz engine effectively takes some work and practice. The first thing to do is use effective question-design strategies. If you ask good questions, you’ll get useful data about your students’ performance and understanding of the material. Of course, the converse is also true. There is a ton of literature about effective assessment design available. I’ll just highlight a few of the most important ideas:
Tie each question to a course goal. After all, you want to know whether your students are achieving the goals of the course, so why not ask them directly?
Try to ask multiple questions about each important idea in the class. This gives you more data points about a student’s understanding.
When writing a multiple-choice question, be sure each wrong answer represents a common misconception. This will help you diagnose student thinking and eliminate easy guessing.
Write questions requiring your students to think at different levels. Include recall questions, comprehension questions, ...