ARCHIVE (old comments, generally dealt with)

This thread relates to the use of self-tests as learning resources, which I discussed in a live web seminar on April 6th 2011 - in the series 'Transforming Assessment' run by Geoffrey Crisp at Adelaide University. The recording and slides are linked at

Do enter and respond to comments - anonymously if you like. Tony GM (

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COMMENT from An American colleague drew my attention to a recent article in the New York Times by PAM BELLUCK (Jan 20, 2011): "To Really Learn, Quit Studying and Take a Test" (with 320 Comments)
Summary: Taking a test is not just a passive mechanism for assessing how much people know, according to new research. It actually helps people learn, and it works better than a number of other studying techniques.
This derives from an article by JD Karpicke & JR Blunt: Science 331:772-5(2011) "Retrieval Practice Produces More Learning than Elaborative Studying with Concept Mapping". Their results were striking not only in showing the benefits of simply recalling complex material studied (compared with equivalent time spent re-studying or attempting to structure it) but in the extent to which this was contrary to the students' expectations about relative effectiveness. TGM