Quizbank/QB/Vocabulary

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This page describes the vocabulary used in creating the new QB collection of Quizbank quizzes written in Python.

Quizbank Vocabulary[edit]

Def: Wikiquiz[edit]

A wikiquiz (or simply quiz) refers to a quiz posted on a Wikiversity or Miraheze (that latter wikifarm permits "secret" wikiquizzes that are not easily obtained by students). In the future, all such quizzes are subpages of a Wikiversity resource called QB.[1] These quizzes are written in such a way that their editable wikitext can be copied as textfiles that reside on a private computer where a code resides that can re-process this wikitext and create studyguides and exams.
Wikiquizzes can reside in a number of places. Quizzes placed in the Wikiversity QB subspace are likely to also situated on a personal computer with software capable of creating multiple choice exams that can be printed out for use in a classroom. Wikiquizzes that are under construction might be anywhere on Wikiversity or Miraheze. Instructors might want to keep a secret cache of wikiquizzes on a private Mirhaheze account for questions that student's don't see until the day of the exam. Students might also be tasked with proposing new wikiquiz questions (with pedagogically sound answers or study guides).
To prevent students from peeking into each other's work in progress, their efforts should be done in private Miraheze pages such as can be seen at this "node" on Miraheze[2]:

Def: Course[edit]

A course (or Quizbank course) has a specialized meaning here, although in principle, a Quizbank course could be almost an entire academic course. Here a course refers to both a decision as to what wikiquizzes are included, as well as how many questions from each quiz will be randomly selected for each exam. From the student's point of view, a course refers to a studyguide (defined below). For the instructor, a course would be accompanied by one or more collections of multiple choice exams with questions randomly selected from the studyguide.

Def: Studyguide[edit]

A studyguide (or Wikiquiz studyguide) is a wikitext docment written in two versions. Both versions contain links that require them to be posted as Wikiversity learning resources. One version is intended to be used online, and the other can be printed out as a pdf document so that students may study for an exam while offline. Both versions of an Astronomy studyguide are shown below:
Although it is not very user-friendly, the latter can be printed as a pdf, and a guide to how many questions are from each wikiquiz will be randomly selected for each exam can be found at the end of the document.

Def: Exam suite rendition[edit]

Currently all (Quizbank) courses consist of five exams (4 midterms and a final) that come in two versions to inhibit cheating by students sitting next to each other. Each version of an exam contains the same questions in randomized order (numerical values are also selected to differ between the two versions). We refer to this collection of ten written exams as an Exam suite. To permit an instructor to use the same course design over a period of several years, it is convenient to change the choice of questions to be randomly selected from each wikiquiz. Hence, each exam suite can be printed out in a variety of renditions, so that students cannot use a previous year's rendition as an effective study guide for an upcoming exam. By fixing the number of questions from each wikiquiz to be selected for any given exam, and publicly posting that information, there is no advantage to the student who has obtained a copy of a prevoius rendition of any exam.
Until a suitable GUI software interface is written, these Quizbank courses can only be designed by a qualified programmer. For that reason, a large number of renditions of each exam suite are created and can be distributed to instructors until software can be designed that allow instructors to custom design their courses. If you think about it, this designing of individual courses by different instructors is time-consuming and wasteful. For that reason, it might be desirable to create courses that can be used by multiple instructors. To allow instructors a limited degree of control over the course design, some exam suites could be designed so that exams take only a half-hour to complete, thus permitting instructors to enhance the course and by adding extra questions to the exams.[3]

Def: Numerical and conceptual questions[edit]

The current software supports two types of multiple choice questions. All are multiple choice with a maximum of 5 options, with only one correct (or "best") answer.
A Numerical question consists of the same question, repeated many times, with only the numbers changing. If the question is, "What is 6.6/2?", the possible answers might be a)2.2 , b)3.3 , c)4.4 , d)5.5 , e)6.6 (with "b" as the correct answer). At the moment, all possible answers are printed in numerical order, with the detractors[4] selected so that a student is not likely to calculate a wrong answer. Some might feel that this degrades the exam's effectiveness, since students generally know when they obtained the correct answer. On the other hand, it enhances the pedagogical value of an exam since students are usually informed when they make a mistake. Also, more sophisticated question-writing software could produce likely wrong answers on an exam.[5] Currently, most numerical questions are produced in 25 variations. On any given exam, each of the two versions contain the same question, but in a different (random) location on the exam, and with different numerical values.
A Conceptual question is a multiple choice question in only one variation, but here, only the order of the answers are randomized. A few Conceptual questions involve numbers, especially when the calculation is somewhat trivial and easy to do without a calculator.

Def: Quizbank format[edit]

The Quizbank format is a unique feature of Quizbank that distinguishes it from commercial banks of exam questions. Each quiz is a textfile that that also serves as the wikitext used to display the quiz on a Wikiversity page. The textfile also contains information required by the Quizbank Computuer Code to create exams and studyguides. This extra information includes attribution, as well as a name and short description of the quiz. Design of a protocol for Quizbank Format is underway.

Def: Exammaker[edit]

Exammaker refers to the code that reads wikiquizzes in Quizbank format and allows a person to design a course, which is then used to render a studyguide and a number of renditions of exam suites that instructors could use. Ideally, each instructor would want a unique rendition, as well as a few backup renditions in case a student wishes to take an exam after it has been offered to a class of students (since each rendition contains a fresh collection of randomly selected questions, there is little or no advantage to interrogating students who have already taken a given exam).
Exammaker can also refer to the physical computer that runs this code, or even the person who designs the course, so that one may refer to the collection of Wikiquizzes on a given Exammaker. If a Wikiquiz is upgraded on Wikiversity, the upgrades will not appear in any exams until that the Wikiversity textfile is transferred into the Exammaking computer. This will not be done automatically, but instead by copy/pasting from the Wikiversity page (in "edit" mode) into a textfile that will be read by a Python code that is currently under construction.

Def: Offsite bank[edit]

Offsite bank refers to a bank stored offsite. The only offsite bank at the moment is on Guy's laptop (with a backup on my H drive). It hosts all the quizzes in a way that can be read by Pyton, and mirror the quizzes stored on the wiki.
  1. This ability to maintain a "secret" cache of exam questions renders Miraheze an essential component of the Quizbank concept.
  2. And, the instructor can view students' progress in real time using a "dashboard" such as can be found at Wright State University Lake Campus/2017-1/Phy1060
  3. This will permit us to introduce the Quizbank concept gradually by offering instructors with a small time-saving service that permits them to try the concept on a limited scale. Quizbank will not have a significant impact on the cost of higher education unless it is widely used.
  4. detractor = wrong answer
  5. In physics a "likely wrong answer" might be to offer 10N as the answer when students calculate m=10 kilograms, but were asked to obtain the weight, mg=98kg·m/s2=98N