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    • #34784
      Juliet Parfitt
      Keymaster
        @juliet

        Based on the content above, add your responses to the two questions:

        1. As a learner, which types of activities did you find engaging and which less so? Why do you think that is?
        2. What do you think are the challenges of creating online quizzes for students?

      • #35285
        Georgina Lloyd
        Participant
          @georgie_l

          1. I found all of the activities engaging. The only one I found a bit onerous was the one where you had to spell out the collocations by dragging and dropping letters – I felt it distracted a bit from the importance of recognising and remembering the collocations. However, they were all tricky words to spell, so activity could be justified. I really liked how the word list stuff built up on the screen, I thought it was great. The only other activity that didn’t feel quite right was the one where we spotted mistakes in sentences. I felt it needed explanations after to show where the mistakes were so that students could check their understanding.

          2. Time – it seems like these quizzes would have taken a lot of time to create. It’s also difficult to put some of this input into quiz format, not black and white e.g. the reporting verbs – but this is a review, so discussion would have been done earlier. Overall, I think it is worth the investment in time if you know the numbers taking the course are going to be large.

        • #35322
          Brenda Allen
          Participant
            @azurial

            As a learner, which types of activities did you find engaging and which less so?

            Those which provide a sense of immediacy and ‘instant gratification’.  Visual and tactile appeal is another important element. I find I get switched off when there are too many items or if the underlying logic is not rigorously applied throughout.  I especially liked the Word Class activity.  It is a perfect example of how online delivery can have the edge over any kind of paper f2f equivalent.

            Why do you think that is?

            Because they are most motivating and rewarding. Many of the best quizzes have their origins in Game Theory with their notions of challenge, levelling up and down, and competition as well as reward.  Providing instant access to the answers facilitates this, in hand with accessible explanations for rapid revision.  Ideally, triggers should also take the learner back to the original material for an impromptu revision session.  All this provides a non-intimidating learning environment where self-testing avoids the panic brought on from being publicly judged/potential loss of face.  Others, meanwhile, may prefer a more openly competitive type of challenge. Or it can be a case of progressing from self-checking to public competition once sufficient confidence has been privately acquired.

            What do you think are the challenges of creating online quizzes for students?

            1) Mastering the software.  2) As importantly, selecting and analysing the content to maximum effect.  3) Making them motivating and rewarding – and fun.  4) Ensuring the thing actually works!  Yes, I agree with @georgie_l that this can all necessitate much time investment.

          • #35335
            Robert Anderson
            Participant
              @robert

              As a learner, which types of activities did you find engaging and which less so? Why do you think that is?

              I found all of these activities initially engaging, though I think that over-dependence on one type of response can reduce this. Too many drag and drop activities in one learning sequence can give it quite a repetitive and mechanical feel. I think that this type of format can also be less challenging than other response types, particularly those in which the learner is required to actually produce language. For me, variety is key to keeping learners engaged during quizzes and interactive tasks, as is the degree of challenge, which should increase as the sequence progresses. In addition, in the examples shown here, I personally would have found feedback on why my answers were incorrect to be very useful, and links at the end of quizzes directing me where to go for review material would have been more helpful.

              What do you think are the challenges of creating online quizzes for students?

              Keeping preparation time down to a reasonable level is certainly one challenge, though this is less of an issue as speed increases through practice. Another difficulty is getting the degree of challenge right, as quizzes and quiz items that are too easy or too difficult are both demotivating. Challenge may be regulated through careful choices concerning both content and activity type. Perhaps one more key issue for the designer is to ensure that the quiz has genuine learning value, and that it provides helpful feedback,  both to those who are successful and to those who are not.

              • #35377
                Brenda Allen
                Participant
                  @azurial

                  Good point about the degree of challenge @robert.  I think our own course materials provide a great model for how to avoid many pitfalls.  Eg: in providing variety and appropriate/timely feedback.

              • #35348
                Naomi Rabin
                Participant
                  @naomirabin

                  As a learner, which types of activities did you find engaging and which less so? Why do you think that is?

                  Agree, I have found them all engaging though as I have clicked through these materials each year for the past few years, fatigue has started to set in. I think the friendly avatars and slick interface make them quite engaging, and also the variety of question helps this too.

                  I would say that some of the drag and drop answers seemed like they could be a bit repetitive, especially as @robert says without any feedback or correct examples to help students with mistakes.

                  What do you think are the challenges of creating online quizzes for students?

                  Definitely time as everyone has said! Also making sure that answers are not ambiguous, and that there is enough feedback and variety to ensure it’s not just a ‘click through as fast as you can’ activity.

                  • #35392
                    Brenda Allen
                    Participant
                      @azurial

                      I guess even the best materials lose their novelty value after the first few encounters. A few years would definitely be pushing it!  :yes: There again, familiarity may bring a degree of comfort :-)

                  • #35395
                    Sue Everest
                    Participant
                      @sue

                      I agree with all above, but here are some of my observations:

                      As a learner, which types of activities did you find engaging and which less so?

                      I enjoyed all activities. I think everyone likes to test themselves. In class, I’m often amazed how students are willing to share their scores whether good or bad. So an element of competition is always good. At times I found the instructions slightly confusing, e.g. in the passive test I thought you had to use the passive form. Still thought provoking as to why we use the passive.

                      What do you think are the challenges of creating online quizzes for students?

                      1) Technical ability of designers (as mentioned above)

                      2) How to keep students constantly engaged as they become familiar with the type of activity.

                      3) How to involve students with content rather than trying to score 100%

                      4) How to relay new information, not just a review test.

                      5) How to justify amount of work in providing an activity in relation to its content. For example, The Academic Word List activities seemed rather onerous and might have worked better if more words had been used. :good:

                    • #36521
                      Zsofia Tarjani
                      Participant
                        @zsofit

                        As a learner, which types of activities did you find engaging and which less so?

                        All of them  are engaging really but I can see @naomirabin’s point about fatigue. As a learner, probably I like consistent layout but a range of different interactions, both of which are achieved by these materials. What I do not really like about storyline as a learner is that I can’t go back and forth as I like…I like flicking through things before doing them to have an overall idea of what’s ahead of me, which is not possible in Storyline.  Probably storyline embedded in rise would be the ideal online content for me as a learner.

                        What do you think are the challenges of creating online quizzes for students?

                        I can’t add much to what has already been said.  The question I have probably been thinking about  is how much useful feedback we can realistically build in the activities- something similar was mentioned by @robert too.

                      • #37330
                        David Read
                        Keymaster
                          @david

                          Thanks @georgie_l @azurial @robert @naomirabin @sue @zsofit for your comments, lots of great points made here about quizzes and their roles in online learning. Just to pull together a few key ideas..


                          @robert
                          I think made an excellent point – echoed by others – that we have to be careful about over-dependence on certain activity types (e.g. drag and drop) to avoid it become boring and mechanistic. Absolutely agree, the Variety Principle exists for a reason. At the same time, a little repetition can be useful as it avoids constantly having to write new instructions and for students to learn new systems. They can focus on the content rather than the mechanics of the activity. It’s getting a reasonable balance between the two, I’m not sure there’s any exact rule about this, but it’s something you begin to intuitive feel once you have made a few sequences of content. Getting feedback from students or doing live testing of the activities with students can also be extremely useful if you have the option to do that. Being able to watch them interacting with the content can give you a real sense of whether they are really engaging with it or just doing it mechanically.

                          Challenge, as Robert and Brenda mention, is also important. A difficult balance, rather like dealing with varying levels in a face to face class. It can be useful to think about it in terms of easy to more difficult, controlled to less controlled, obligatory to optional to try to manage that balance. So, you might want to give them the choice of moving to different activities depending on how well they did on a particular quiz or possibly automatically sending them to different activities depending on their score (this is possible within software such as Storyline). Of course, as many of you mention, this can increase the workload if you need to create different activities for different levels.

                          And challenge relates to engagement/motivation, again as many of you mention. That’s why having an easy to more difficult cline can be useful as it builds motivation at the beginning and upping the challenge level keeps that as the activities progress.

                          As many of you mention, time mastering the software to create these quizzes is going to be a key factor for teachers. At the moment I appreciate it can seem daunting how long it takes to create quite basic things, but over time it does get easier/quicker, especially as you learn how to reuse previous content and create templates that populate a lot of the slides with standard objects (headings/backgrounds/avatars etc).

                        • #37511
                          Andrew Burke
                          Participant
                            @andrew

                            Generally would enjoy all activities, variety is the spice of life but don’t think students should have to struggle to understand how to ‘play the game’ so, at the same, a bit of repetition isn’t a bad thing.  I’ve used a few games in my pre-lecture RISE activities and not that many students did them, but it might be that not that many students did the pre-lecture activities in general :wacko:. I wonder if them having to get a percentage of the answers right before moving on or before getting their ‘done’ tick, might be a necessary evil.

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