How do you create test questions for your e-learning module?

Have you ever wondered how to come up with a good test question? This is a relevant question when developing e-learning because a lot of modules end with a final test. We test if the learner understood all the content. We often come up with these questions together with our client. It is important that the test questions are correct in terms of content and they should not be too easy. For multiple choice questions it is important to come up with realistic ‘distractors’. What types of test questions are there? And how do you start? You will read that in this blog.

How do you start?

Include the learning objectives of your module. Ideally, there is one
one (or more) question about each learning objective in a final test. To
determine whether you ask more questions about one learning objective than another, you can use the following guidelines:

  • With learning objectives that have a larger share in the module, you come up with more questions than with learning objectives that have a smaller share.
  • With learning objectives that are more important, you come up with more questions than learning objectives that are less important.

The learning objective gives you an indication of the type of question
that is best used to test whether the learning objective has been achieved:

Example of a learning objective:
After the module, the participant can recognize the five phases of a sales conversation.

Example of a test question that does not correspond with this learning objective:
“Describe the five phases of a sales pitch in your own words.” In this case, the participant has to describe the five phases, which is not the same as recognizing them.

Example of a test question that does match this learning objective:
“Indicate in the email conversation on the right where the five phases of a
sales pitch are applied. ‘ -> Here the participant must indeed recognize the
five phases.

Which types of test questions are there?

With e-learning it is easy if the test is automatically graded. This way, someone does not have to check a stack of tests with open questions per participant. That adds up significantly in e-learning modules in which roughly eight thousand people participate. 

That means we use the following question types in an e-learning built in Articulate Storyline:

  1. Multiple choice question with one correct answer:

What is the capital of North Holland?
a. Amsterdam
b. Haarlem
c. Heerhugowaard

The participant must click on the correct answer.

2 Multiple choice question with multiple correct answers (multiple select):

Which of the following materials are precious metals? Click:
a. Iron
b. Silver
c. gold
d. Copper
e. Platinum

The participant must click on the correct answers.

3 . True / False question (with a statement):

Statement: “A leap year is a year with 366 days.”
a. True
b. False

The participant must click on the correct answer.

4. Type the missing word (fill in the blank):

Complete the sentence with the missing word:

… do you already live in the Netherlands?

The participant has to fill in the missing word.

5. Matching question:

Match the words to the correct translation:

la chaise – the door
la table – the kitchen
la cuisine – the chair
la porte – the table

The participant must always select the correct word from a list of options or drag it to the correct place.

6. Sequence question:

Drag the steps to fix a bicycle tire in the correct order:

Put the valve back on.
Check the tire for holes and remaining (sharp) parts.
Stick the inner tube.
Remove the inner tube from the tire.
Pump up the inner tube again.
Remove the valve.
Remove the tire.
Find the leak.
Put the inner and outer tires back on the bicycle.

The participant has to drag the answer options in the correct order.

7. Hotspot question:

Click in the image where the liver is located:

The participant must click on the correct area in the image.

8. Word selection:

Choose the correct missing word:

When the price level rises, the purchasing power rises / falls.

The participant must select the correct word.

Do you need help designing a good online test? Or do you need additional ideas about online testing? Send us a message!



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