Creating Success: 5 Tips for Authoring Digital Tests

E-assessment provides new opportunities for authors of tests in all paths of education. From new question types to reflection using learning analytics, there are several handy tools. Our own Inspera Assessment app help teachers and academics create assessments for their students that are more authentic than it was possible on traditional paper tests. Read on to discover our tips on how to get the most out of authoring tests digitally.

Engage students with multimedia content

From language learning to art classes, from history to science lessons - audio and video content can be a very effective and creative way to test students’ understanding or illustrate a text question. Not only in online classes, such materials are also used in a variety of subjects as everyday teaching aids. Why then not make it part of the assessment as well?

The increase of engagement with the content is guaranteed. Any question designed in Inspera Assessment can contain multiple music, sound, or video clips. Make sure you test it in preview mode to ensure it works as intended, and you are all set!

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Save time later with auto-marking

When the test is designed and the questions are written, we also have to think about how it will be marked and decide on a mark scheme. One of the most appealing elements of e-assessment is the possibility to do marking more efficiently. Most teachers associate auto-marking with multiple-choice questions, but that is not all.

In Inspera Assessment, there are over 30 other question types, many of which can be auto-marked, with advanced scoring options. Being aware these options exist may save you a lot of time down the line, whilst not compromising the quality of the assessment method.  

Work as a team

When working within the same department, class, or with the same age-group, there are many benefits of collaboration in authoring tests. Digital question sets can be easily shared, in order to get feedback or allowing the questions to be re-used, used as a template or as inspiration by collaborators. Working as a team towards the common goal, tasks can be delegated and workload distributed, and all in one place. No more endless emails, attachments, links, complex folder structures and USB sticks!

Be more creative with the variety of question types

The variety of question types on offer may inspire you to experiment with your tests, if your curriculum allows it. Whilst on paper you may test for only written input, here you could create interactive puzzles with questions such as drag-and-drop, matching/pairing, or hotspot. Or, if you teach a STEM subject, you could get them programming in the test environment, or allow them to draw diagrams and do calculations in GeoGebra, all within one test. It is all about assessment that is testing not only a wider range of skills, but also bridging the gap between the classroom and the real-life conditions.

Reflect on your performance using learning analytics

Authoring digital tests over time, you and your colleagues will accumulate a question bank that can be used to generate learning analytics. These analytics can provide valuable information on your questions’ performance. Next time you are designing a test, you may use the insights from that reflection to create even better and smarter questions. Our R&D team is working hard on making these authoring innovations, and many more to come.

 

Do you want to learn more about online exams and assessments? Feel free to check out our "Guide to Online Exams and Assessments".

 

Topics: digital assessment, e-assessment, learning analytics, usability, design, authoring, digital tests

Anja Sisarica

Written by Anja Sisarica

User Researcher & Product Strategist - Inspera Assessment