Using the Moodle Quiz as a Learning Tool
Most people tend to think of a quiz as a means to track student learning, but few recognize how the rich features of the Quiz function in a learning management system (LMS) can be harnessed to enhance student learning.
While many teachers welcome the automatic scoring feature of a LMS as a time saving boon, students also value the immediate feedback of how they fared on the exam. This feedback can be expanded to include explanations of correct or incorrect answers to reinforce learning, especially when referencing more detailed explanations in the assigned readings, homework, lecture, or other resources.
The default setting does not reveal to students answers to individual questions immediately upon submitting the quiz. If allowing only a single attempt on a quiz, consider revealing the answers immediately after the attempt to support learning.
When the teacher allows students multiple attempts on an exam, students are given motivation for improving their understanding. Using the “Highest grade” grading method also encourages further effort, as students need not risk lowering their score. Coupling repeat attempts with random question selection can help students spot the areas where their grasp of the topics is weakest and focus their study accordingly.
By providing practice quizzes for self-assessment, students can check their understanding before graded exams and highlight areas for which they can seek clarification from the text, instructor, or other resources. These practice quizzes can also help to alleviate test taking anxiety so a more accurate assessment of student learning is possible. Quizzes can be easily excluded from the gradebook to provide merely a self-assessment opportunity. Create an “Ungraded” or “Self Assessment” category that is weighted to 0 and place all practice items in that category.
The teacher can take a birds-eye view by analyzing automatically-compiled quiz results to spot the questions that were most often missed. The “Item analysis” link on the “Results” tab provides an opportunity to address confusion and misunderstandings on key course concepts in class.
Written by: Joan Van Duzer, Instructional Technologist, Humboldt State University