Brussels-bound for a full conference programme 9th – 11th October

Posted by Jane Townsend

In less than two weeks, Questionmark users will gather in Brussels for the Questionmark European Users Conference.

Delegates will enjoy a full programme, with lots of choices  — from case studies to presentations about best practices and training sessions on the use of Questionmark technologies.

Networking opportunities will include our hot n’ happening “Speak Easy” evening event.  If you are attending the conference, get your lucky charms ready for a big night out!

Here’s the complete conference line-up. Click here for details about all these sessions: 

General Sessions:

  • Conference Kick-off and Opening General Session
  • Assessment Security : The Stakes are Getting Higher

Tech Training

  • Introduction to Questionmark Perception for Beginners
  • Using Questionmark Reporting and Analytics Tools
  • Methods for Integrating Perception with Other Systems
  • Planning your Migration from Perception v4 to v5
  • Customising the Participant Experience
  • Delivering Assessments to Mobile Devices

Case Studies

  • Practical Tips for Sustainable Large scale e-Assessment – University of Bradford
  • Deploying Questionmark Perception v5 Globally at HSBC
  • Automated testing of assessment delivery performance using JMeter –  Rotterdam University of Applied Science
  • Extended Essay Editor – Complete process for managing both Question and Answers – Nocada IT-Konsult  and IT-Arkitekterna Västerås
  • Online Assessment at the University of Graz
  • e-Assessment in Dental Radiology: observing the future – University of Dundee
  • Deploying and Using a Blackboard-integrated Questionmark Module Evaluation System- University of Glamorgan
  • Questionmark can be more than Questionmark: Connections, integrations and optimising the deployment – ECABO
  • Using Questionmark to create and mark paper-based exams – Harper Adams University College
  • User attitudes towards online testing at Aberystwyth University

Best Practices

  • Using Save as you Go? Technical and other security aspects of test taking – Leen Vegter, Stoas
  • Using “Regular Expressions” when Importing Questions from a Word or Excel Document- Gregory Furter,  EMLYON Business School
  • Using the Latest Learning Research to Improve Your Questionmark Assessments – John Kleeman,  Questionmark
  • Using Web Services to Integrate with Questionmark Perception – Steve Lay,  Questionmark
  • Using Captivate and Flash Simulations in eLearning and Assessments – Doug Peterson,  Questionmark
  • Using Questionmark Perception to Make SharePoint an Effective Learning Platform – John Kleeman, Questionmark
  • Discussing successful implementation strategies – Esther van der Linde, HAN University
  • Play the Game Digital Assessments: is your organisation ready? – Michel Kao, HAN University
  • Using QMWise to Customise Questionmark Perception- Mauro Chieppa, Stoas

We’ll also be hosting  group discussions with our product owners about potential new offerings. You can register for the conference online or email more information.

European Conference Update: focus on best practices

Posted by Jane Townsend

With the Questionmark European Users Conference just a few months off, now’s a good time to look at some of the presentations we have lined up.

Here, for instance, here are just three of the breakout sessions that will focus on best practices:

  • Using the Latest Learning Research to Improve Your Questionmark Assessments — Find out how questions can directly help learning, and how to apply the findings of recent research to your use of assessments.
  • Using Web Services to Integrate with Questionmark Perception – Get an overview of integration methods and a deep dive into some powerful options for connecting to and building upon Questionmark Perception using Web Services — complete with examples of real-world applications.
  • Using Questionmark Perception to Make SharePoint an Effective Learning Platform – Learn to use Questionmark Perception inside SharePoint right out of the box to measure and reinforce learning. It’s easier than you may think: no programming experience required!

Click here for details about these and many other sessions, which will include product training, case studies and drop-ins with Questionmark technicians.

The conference also offers excellent opportunities to meet with Questionmark product managers and to network with your learning and assessment colleagues.

It’s a great learning opportunity, so register soon to join us in Brussels from 9 – 11 October.

The Open Assessment Platform in Action


Posted by Howard Eisenberg

I was impressed, during the recent Questionmark European Users Conference, to meet so many people who have been using Questionmark’s Open Assessment Platform to create solutions that address their organizations’ particular needs. These customers have used various elements of this platform, which utilizes  standard technologies, to address their specific challenges. These solutions make use of the readily available APIs (Application Program Interfaces), Questionmark Perception version 5 templates and other resources that are available through the Open Assessment Platform.

Some examples:

By incorporating the functionality of JQuery (a cross-browser open source JavaScript library) into Questionmark Perception version 5, the University of Leuven in Belgium has been able to set up client-side form validation. Their case study presenter demonstrated how to  differentiate between required and optional questions in a survey. Participants could be required, say, to answer the first question and third questions but not the second—and they wouldn’t be able to submit the survey until they answer the required questions. They also showed how a participant could be required to provide the date in a specific, pre-determined format.  And they demonstrated an  essay question that includes a paragraph containing misspelled words, which students identify by clicking on them. Customizations like these make creative use of the templates in Perception version 5 and demonstrate that it’s an extensible platform with which users can create their own tailor-made solutions.

A staff member from Rotterdam University demonstrated a technique for creating random numeric questions using Microsoft Excel and QML (Question Markup Language). This solution makes it possible to base questions on randomly generated values and other well-chosen variables, allowing for limits on lower and upper boundaries. Formulas in Excel make it possible to generate the numbers that appear in word problems  generated using  QML, which in turn can be used to create various iterations and clones of typical math question types.  QML— because it is complete, well structured and well documented – is proving its worth as a tool for generating large numbers of questions and even for providing “smart” feedback: Common mistakes can be diagnosed by establishing certain conditions within a question. For example, If the input is supposed to  be a number rounded to the nearest tenth and the correct answer is 55.5, it can be assumed that a person who put down 55.4 as their answer has probably made a rounding error.

Random conversations revealed other innovations such as automating the creation of participants, their enrollment  in appropriate groups and the scheduling of their assessments — all made possible through the use of QMWISe (Questionmark Web Integration Services environment).

It feels to me as if we have reached a threshold where the Open Assessment Platform is really being embraced and put to imaginative use. The stories I heard at the conference were certainly eye openers for me; I think that innovations like these will inspire other Questionmark users to come up with equally innovative solutions. So I am looking forward to hearing more great case studies at the 2011 Users Conference in Los Angeles! (The call for proposals is now open, so if you are a Perception user now is the time to think about how you would like to participate in the 2011 conference program.)

Peer Discussion – Hot Topics in Assessment


Posted By Sarah ElkinsYU7U6622_JPG

During the recent Questionmark European Users Conference in Manchester, Stefanie Moerbeek, Senior Coordinator for Examination Development at EXIN, and Greg Pope, Questionmark’s Analytics and Psychometrics Manager, facilitated a best practice session that gave delegates the opportunity to participate in a peer discussion on Hot Topics in the Assessment Industry.

Stefanie and Greg join me in this podcast to share the outcomes of this session and provide an overview of topics such as beta testing questions, using randomization within examinations and dealing with intellectual property theft of exams.

Questionmark European Users Conference Now Underway

Joan Phaup

Posted by Joan Phaup

There’s plenty of excitement in Manchester, England, where the first general session of the EUconfphotoQuestionmark European Users Conference  brought delegates up to date with recent product releases and Questionmark’s Open Assessment Platform. Breakouts sessions this afternoon will be followed by dinner at Old Trafford, home of England’s famed Manchester United Football Club.


Tomorrow’s general session will explore the themes of E-assessment and Interoperability, Standards and Accessibility and another full program of breakout sessions including case studies, technical training, best practices and Product Central discussions where delegates share their insights with Questionmark product managers.

You can catch highlights from the general sessions via our Live Blog and/or follow the conference on Twitter.