I spent some time talking the other day with Bon Crowder, a global instructional consultant for a large oilfield services company. She explained how her organization has expanded its use of online assessments to include not only high-stakes exams and certifications but also formative assessments such as quizzes. With participants all over the world — and having recently launched an assessment to 40,000 people — Bon’s organization values the ability to gather and analyze data that will help improve instructional programs.
We touched on many subjects, including the involvement of subject matter experts (SMEs) in using Questionmark Live to create assessment content, options for monitoring some higher-stakes assessments taken outside of testing centers, and a technique Bon has devised for easily creating multiple math-related questions from a single question stem.
The Questionmark Live team has added a dynamic new assessment type to its growing array of features: the ability to author course evaluation surveys. We have included four topics of library questions that you can add to your survey to make authoring fast and easy. Watch the following video to see this solution in action.
I recently had the opportunity to speak with Per Schou-Neilsen from Johnson Controls Denmark. Johnson Controls is a global diversified technology company with 130,000 employees in more than 150 countries. Per, who is Manager for Learning and Development, Industrial Refrigeration, Europe & Africa, will present a case study at the Questionmark 2010 European Users Conference to be held in Amsterdam October 3 – 5.
During his presentation he will share his recent experiences with Questionmark Perception and its use in a development and certification program for new or newly hired service technicians.
We are very much looking forward to hearing Per’s case study presentation in Amsterdam. You can listen to this podcast for a hint of what Per will be discussing and why he is looking forward to the conference.
Spaces for the 2010 European Users Conference are limited – Register now so you don’t miss out!
I’d like to draw your attention to a thought-provoking article in the New York Times earlier this week about the best way to learn.
One interesting observation in the article is that although you might think going and staying at a quiet place to study is the best way to learn, this isn’t the case. It’s actually easier to learn if you move around to different places! It would seem that when the outside context varies, it’s easier to put on the neural scaffolding that helps retain something in memory.
And, mirroring papers by Dr. Will Thalheimer commissioned by Questionmark (see The Learning Benefits of Questions and Providing Learners with Feedback), tests also help the retention of learning. In particular the New York Times describes an experiment at Washington University in St. Louis where two sets of students studied a reading passage in different ways. One set studied it twice in back-to-back sessions, the other set studied it once and then took a practice test on it, within the same time. As you can see in the diagram below, students who studied only learned the information well at the time, but forget about half of it within a week. But those who studied and had a practice test, retained much more of the information.
The bottom line from the research is that taking memory tests improves long-term retention. Tests don’t just measure learning: the act of taking a test helps you retain information you have learned.
Ever wondered how to customise the participant interface so that it conforms to your organisation’s style guides while also meeting your users’ requirement? Then you’ll be happy to know that our training course on ‘Customising the Participant Interface in Questionmark Perception Version 5’ soon will be held for the first time ever in the UK (and Europe for that matter!).
Participants will look under the hood of Perception’s participant-facing software, which includes login and assessment list screens as well as assessment delivery and feedback screens. Learn about tools, techniques and best practices for customising the interface templates. Then apply what you are learning through hands-on exercises that are based on the needs of real-world Perception users.
If you’re registered for the 2010 European Users Conference – then you’ll be even happier to know that all delegates are able to register for the course at a very special discount.
Click here for further course details or to sign up.
PmWiki is a wiki-based system for collaborative creation and maintenance of Web sites. PmWiki pages look and act like normal web pages, except they have an “Edit” link that makes it easy for administrators to customize and add new markups such as an IFrame that will house Questionmark assessments. Hundreds of features are already available via extensions (called “recipes”) that are available from the PmWiki “Cookbook.”