In this article, I’ll look at different ways to assess student learning using technology. Here are four methods of online assessment that are sure to support training, engage your audience, and provide teachers with insight into their students’ learning process.
Assessment is simply the process of gathering information on what students know based on their educational experience. Assessment results are typically used to identify areas for improvement and ensure that course content meets learning needs. There are a number of practices you can use to evaluate students mindfully. The best method will vary based on learning needs and objectives. For example, an online quiz will be your perfect match if your goal is to measure knowledge gains quickly. But if you want to test your students’ interview skills, you’re better off using a dialog simulation.
Quizzes are a traditional assessment tool. Plus, when paired with technology, they are an excellent way to engage student learning. Quiz questions can take a number of forms, such as multiple-choice, fill-in-the-blanks, and hotspots. One benefit of quizzes is that they are short and easy to assess. Another is that question order and options can be randomized, so each student’s quiz is unique.
Online quizzes are ideal for measuring learning results across a wide audience. Since each student takes the same test, you can compare and contrast results across different classes, schools.
Polls allow you to capture feedback directly from your audience about their learning experience. They can be used to measure anything from learning satisfaction (Kirkpatrick Level One feedback) to why a student made a particular choice during a lesson. Online surveys are highly engaging for learners because they allow them to share their opinions, make themselves heard, and are quick to complete.
You can also use poll questions when you want to quickly grab and focus your learners’ attention on something important or break the ice during an online group interview session. For the latter, you can simply carry out a mood survey.
How can I create an online poll question?
If you host webinars via web conferencing solutions, you can use built-in tools for conducting polls. There are also some specialized online platforms like SurveyMonkey that allow you to create, send, and analyze surveys.
You can also build a survey with eLearning authoring tools like iSpring Suite. All you have to do is to choose a ready-made question template supported by the iSpring QuizMaker tool, write the questions and answer choices.
Game-type activities turn a series of test questions into a game. For example, a trivia game might ask learners to answer a certain number of questions within a period of time and award points based on the number of correct answers.
Game-based assessments are considered fun, and not “tests”, so they are generally a good indicator of true skills and knowledge. Besides, they have been shown to enhance learning by promoting the development of non-cognitive skills, such as discipline, risk-taking, collaboration, and problem solving.
Add game-type activities when you want to engage and challenge your students in a non-traditional way. Organizations have found that game-type activities work well in employee training, while schools have found that high-achieving students enjoy competing with their peers in learning games.
How can I create game-type activities?
Quizlet and Kahoot are two popular applications that teachers can use to create fast-paced interactive learning games. Quizlet allows you to create a study set of online flashcards for learning terms and definitions, while with Kahoot, you can build engaging quizzes and let your students score points by answering quickly and correctly.
There are also many other apps, such as GimKit, Formative, and Plickers, that can add a game- show experience to the classroom.
A forum is an online discussion board organized around a topic. Asking students to contribute to a forum post is an excellent way to gauge their understanding, pique their interest, and support their learning. In this activity, students are given a critical thinking question based on a lesson or a reading, and are asked to reflect on both. Their answers are posted to a forum and their peers are given the chance to respond.
Use this method when you want learners to interact, communicate, and collaborate as part of the learning process, while checking their topic comprehension.
How can I create a forum post assessment activity?
Start by creating an online message board exclusively for your class in your LMS or some external platform like ActiveBoard. Identify common topics or themes that you can align messages to. Set participation goals and guidelines that explain acceptable standards for posting (be respectful of others, avoid foul language or personal criticism, etc.).
The facilitator should review postings on a regular basis and provide constructive feedback or guidance to participants.
Online assessments are a critical part of eLearning and should be undertaken with the same level of care and rigor that you put into creating your learning content. The good news is that you don’t have to be a programming genius to build online assessments.

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