December 11, 2006

Creating great quiz questions

ILI-L is full of inquiries about info lit tests, pre and post tests, and end-of-workshop quizzes. For the most part it seems like we we all need are examples – examples of tested quiz questions that are clear, that ask what is really intended to be asked, that don’t use confusing terminology and that have good, clear distracters (which are the incorrect responses in a multiple choice question).

Clearly, writing great questions is a challenge. Over the years in our “Unravel the Library? workshops at the U of MN-Twin Cities we try each semester to improve our questions. I talk about this quite a bit in the Creating the One-Shot Library Workshop book, but here, wanted to point out a resource that I recommend you track down if you're interested in writing better quiz questions:

Assessment in College Library Instruction Programs, is part of ACRL’s CLIP Note series, #32, and is written by Lawrie H. Merz and Beth L. Mark ACRL

There are lots of great examples there that can help keep us from reinventing the wheel.. again.

[Also, related to this topic is another entry in this blog about the relational model of design that links assessment to goals and activities.]