Elizabeth Gehrig By Elizabeth Gehrig • September 4, 2015

Why Do I Have to Take Quizzes in My Online Courses?

When you spend 10+ years in the world of testing and assessment, like me, you tend to hear a lot of diverse and interesting questions. But when it comes to online quizzes, I usually hear a specific few:

Why do I have to take quizzes when I am already taking exams, writing papers and completing other course activities? What is the point of it all?

These are perfectly legitimate questions, and I would like to answer them. 

When students feel overwhelmed, they often question the purpose of taking quizzes. Many students do not understand why quizzes are instrumental to their success.

Quizzes can be extremely beneficial to your learning if you allow them to be. Are you enrolled in a course with quizzes this term? If so, here are ways to use the online quizzes in your course as a powerful study tool. 

Assess Yourself

Each quiz offers the chance to “check in” with your own learning during a course and assess if you know what you are expected to know. By taking a few minutes to stop and review what you have learned, you can ensure that you understand the key concepts of the module or chapter you are studying.

Strengthen Weak Areas

Quizzes can be revealingly helpful. Your quiz may provide feedback after taking it, so you will know which questions you got right and wrong. This helps you identify any gaps in your knowledge and allows you to determine what you should spend more time studying.

Build Up Learning

Quizzes are built to help you retain what you have already learned. Many studies have found that quizzes are crucial in reinforcing the material you have been studying, which helps as you build on your existing knowledge in the next module or course.

Not only that, but quizzes help you build a strong foundation for the higher-level skills you will need for writing a paper or taking a midterm or final exam. Since you kept up with your course content by taking quizzes, you won’t need to cram at exam time – keeping you on track throughout your course.

Practice, Practice, Practice

Most of the University’s quizzes consist of 10 to 30 multiple-choice questions. These questions can be in any order, and a few will be new each time. Each quiz is worth a small percentage of your final grade, and often, you can retake them for additional practice. Quizzes can be taken online, without a proctor, and you can even use your course materials during the quiz.

Since quizzes provide a great, low-risk opportunity to review your understanding, you will find it easier to retain your knowledge and figure out where you need to spend more time studying.

Elizabeth Gehrig

Written by Elizabeth Gehrig

Elizabeth Gehrig is a senior assessment development specialist in the Center for Learning and Technology. Passionate about high-stakes testing, her career spans more than 10 years in language testing, credit-by-exam and outcomes assessment. Email her at clt@tesu.edu.

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