None of the Above: How Good Intentions Create Bad Assessments

Conference Archive

Learning Solutions Conference & Expo 2019 - March 28, 2019

Sean Hickey

Lead Curriculum Developer
Ohio State University

Cara North

Operations Training Manager
Silfex, Inc

As more learning and training is delivered online, instructors and trainers no longer have the opportunity to get to know all their learners by meeting them face-to-face. This disconnect often leads to missing or ineffective assessments as eLearning developers increasingly hope their learners understand the content, but lack the tools to adequately measure the level of understanding. How do you know if your eLearning assessments are effective? Are you testing learners’ content knowledge, or do your assessments measure their deduction skills? In this session, you will explore common test-writing pitfalls and discover how smart test-takers excel without learning the content.

This session will help trainers and eLearning developers recognize high-quality, content-driven assessments and provide an opportunity to experience poorly written test items from the point of view of the test-taker. Learn multiple-choice question-writing “rules,” such as including plausible distractors; learn to recognize common test-item pitfalls, like convergence; and find out how smart test-takers use grammatical cues and distractor length to make educated guesses. Combine all of these best practices, and you will take your eLearning assessments to the next level!

In this session, you will learn:

  • Best practices for multiple-choice assessments
  • About common assessment-writing pitfalls and how to avoid them
  • How to connect assessments to stated learning objectives
  • How to identify the depth of knowledge (DOK) level of a learning objective
  • How to match the DOK level of an assessment item to its stated learning objective
  • About the consequences of relying on poorly written assessment items


Designers, developers, trainers, and other training professionals


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