Quizbank

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Click here to see every rendition of each question written so far.
To save paper, short quizzes can be posted on an overhead projector. In a crowded classroom where cheating is a problem, assign different questions (1,3) or (2.4) to neighboring students.

About[edit]

Quizbank is a collection of conceptual and numerical quizzes that serve a dual purpose: (1) They can be used online by students for practice; and (2) a Python code can turn them into in-class multiple choice quizzes and exams. Quizbank is used for all the exams that User:Guy vandegrift teaches at Wright State University Lake Campus. A study guide posted on Wikiversity shows students how many questions from each exam will be randomly selected from each quiz.[1] For a sample study guide, see Wright State University Lake Campus/2016-9/Phy1050/Study guide

But it's bad policy to let everybody see the testbank![edit]

Though we cannot prevent students from obtaining copies of testbanks, we can at least take the profit out of this commerce.
Student loan debt exceeds credit card and auto loan debt. It is shown in red and is the largest growing debt in the US.

Three answers to that comment:

  1. With a bit of effort private wikis could permit "secret" quesions known only to the instructor.
  2. The cat is out of the bag. Students can already download testbanks for a fee of typically $50.[2][3]
  3. One application where it might be good policy involves the concept of a flipped classroom. This collection of 4-question quizzes could allow instructors to verify whether students have at least looked at all the examples of a chapter. Only by either understanding or memorizing the steps required to solve these problems could they do well on the quizzes. In principle, it should be possible to someday revise the contact hours associated with teaching introductory courses in a classroom setting that is both economical and convenient for students. Why should they hear the professor say what could so easily be read or seen on video? Key to this concept is the fact that there is no reason for the publishers of OER to perpetually modify their products to ensure future sales.[4] Hence, a quiz question based on an example in an OER textbook is likely to have a long "shelf life" because the publishers and authors of these not-for-profit texts have a long list of books waiting to be written and no time needlessly tinker with books already published.[5]

But test-based education is over rated![edit]

Yes it is. But keep in mind the following:

  1. Students contributing to the testbank rates high on Bloom's taxonomy (see this student effort at File:Anonymous_Life_in_the_Universe.pdf.)
  2. We need to reduce the cost of higher education. Student loan debt is shown in red in the figure. The only larger form of debt is mortgage debt, which is also a form of investment. I teach mostly introductory courses and spend a lot of time telling students things that most of them already know and all of them should have known before the class began. Why not cut the lecture time in half, and establish preliminary exams for students to pass? Those who are bad test takers can instead contribute exams and/or essays. Or, they can get tutored by other students to pass the exams. With a little good judgement, the instructor can control the negative influence of these exams.[6]
  3. The highest form of teaching is to teach students to teach themselves. Why can't we provide exams for some of our courses so that students wishing pursue autodidacticism could attempt to "test out" of all or part of the course?
  4. An easy way to "hide the good questions in plain sight" would be to require that students create test questions and grade them for originality and usefulness. Someday, the experts could data-mine these banks for the useful questions.

Footnotes[edit]


  1. Each exam also includes an instructor's version with all questions in chronological order in order to facilitate preparation for the exams.
  2. http://testbankscafe.eu/index.php?route=product/search&search=Physics
  3. http://testbankscafe.eu/Test-Bank-for-Physics-Concepts-and-Connections-5th-Edition-Art-Hobson?search=Physics
  4. When I was a student back in the 1970s, textbooks rarely came out in more than 2 editions, making it easy to buy used books. Now as many as 10 editions of a textbook is routine. Once a publisher accidentally sent out a mixture of the latest edition plus the previous edition. The bookstore arranged for students to return the out-of-date edition for a free replacement. I was astonished to hear the bookstore clerk tell me that the old books would probably be destroyed (presumably because the publisher does not want large numbers of outdated editions on the market.)
  5. In contrast, there are reasons why the for-profit publishers want to "improve" their textbooks in order to find an excuse to replace them
  6. One good policy might be to allow students to deduct a certain number of incorrect answers. That would, for example, cause a 85% to be recorded exactly if it were a 100% score. This would give students some flexibility regarding questions they "don't like".