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What do you get when you cross an assessment with an activity?

The answer is – of course – a quiz!

The quiz tool in Solent Online Learning (SOL) is a simple and effective way to help students engage in their learning, and Lesley Turner, lecturer in Health Care Sciences, has found them invaluable for encouraging active learning in her level 4 students.

First of all, there are the practical considerations. It’s on SOL, so students can access it in any setting, on any device. There’s no point having something good if nobody can reach it. You can also set up quiz questions in several different formats, so there should be a type for any need.

What about its use in learning? There are clear benefits for both students and staff.

Lesley uses the quizzes so her students can test their recall and understanding of facts and knowledge. They can get feedback on their learning and also use the quizzes as a revision tool. As SOL provides the correct answers to each question, the students learn even when they get an answer wrong. Possibly best of all, the challenge of improving their scores has motivated her students to keep taking the quizzes over and over. Not surprisingly, the students love them!

There are plenty of benefits for staff too. Quizzes can be useful at the start of a unit, to get an idea of the prior knowledge your students are bringing to your class. You could also use a quiz after each class, to see what your students have picked up, whether they’ve understood it properly, and whether you might need to go over something again the following week. You can also check your own skills in writing questions; it’s not always as easy as you might think.

On a practical level, the quizzes are all marked automatically in SOL so there’s no additional workload if you’ve got a large group. You can keep track of your students’ progress, and also those who aren’t engaging or maybe aren’t performing as well as the majority. There could be any number of reasons for this, and early intervention is always a good idea.

Lesley’s conclusion? Quizzes are a great formative tool for students, and an informative one for lecturers. Full marks!