QuizStar is a free, online platform provided by 4Teachers.org that instructors can use to
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QuizStar logo from http://quizstar.4teachers.org/indexs.jsp
create and administer online quizzes for the physical or virtual classroom. Students can register for and log into QuizStar to take assigned quizzes through any device that has internet access.


Getting Started | Online Learning Application | Pros and Cons | References

Getting Started

To get started, instructors simply create a QuizStar account, and then can immediately begin creating classes and quizzes. According to QuizStar’s website, here are 4 main instructor activities:

1. Create a Class

Quizzes are assigned to classes. So, before creating a quiz, instructors must create one or more classes that a quiz will be assigned to. Classes can be public (anyone can register and take quizzes once accepted by the instructor) or private (only students the instructor has pre-registered can take quizzes). Here is a short 2 minute, 3 second video on how to create a class in QuizStar:


2. Create a Quiz

Creating a quiz is done in 2 simple steps:
  1. Select Quiz Settings
  2. Create Quiz Questions

Step 1: Select Quiz Settings

To create a quiz, instructors set the following parameters:
  • Number of questions to display per page
  • Font size
  • Number of quiz attempts
  • Whether to display feedback and if so, when
  • Whether to display correct answers and if so, when
  • Frequency of emails containing quiz results

Step 2: Create Quiz Questions

Once quiz settings are established, instructors create questions. There are several options when it comes to creating questions:
  • Select a question from a question bank (questions previously created)
  • Select response type: multiple choice, true/false, or open ended
  • Attach multimedia files to questions and answers
  • Establish the number of points each question is worth
  • Provide question feedback

3. Administer the Quiz

Once a quiz is created, instructors can do the following:
  • Preview, edit, or delete the quiz
  • Determine the order of quiz questions
  • Determine how long the quiz will be active for
  • Assign the quiz to one or more classes
  • Remove the quiz from a class
  • Once the quiz has been launched and students have started taking it, instructors can give students another chance to take the quiz (for example, if a student tried to take the quiz but a glitch occurred and they need to retake it)

Here is a video (5 min, 28 seconds) on how to create and administer a quiz in QuizStar:


4. Reporting

Once students begin taking quizzes, instructors can view reports to see class results and individual student results. Several metrics are automatically calculated including highest score, lowest score, mean score, total participants, and average number of attempts.

Students Register and Take Quizzes
Once instructors have set up their classes and quizzes and assigned them, they can instruct students to register and take an online quiz. To learn more, here is a link to a short video on how students can register and take an online quiz using QuizStar: Register for QuizStar video.

Online Learning Application

QuizStar is an online assessment tool. It really replaces what a traditional handwritten quiz might be, but offers the benefit of automatic scoring (except for open ended response type questions). Here is how QuizStar could be used at the beginning, middle, and end of an online course:

  • Course Beginning: As a Pre-Assessment tool, QuizStar can be used to help the instructor get to know the student either before the course begins or as it begins. The instructor can frame questions to learn about the student on a more personal level and also to understand their level of knowledge and abilities (from the student’s perspective) going into the course.
  • Course Middle: QuizStar could be used to conduct periodic polls and surveys as to how students are finding the course, what questions they have so far, etc. For example, I sometimes ask my students for the "muddiest point" in the middle of a class. By this, I want to know what students are having the most difficulty grasping so I can help provide clarification. QuizStar could be used for this. And, of course, on a more traditional level, it could be used to administer tests on course material/concepts.
  • Course End: QuizStar could be used to deliver the final course evaluation to discover what students thought went well and what could be improved. If two identical tests were administered on knowledge level, one at the beginning of the course and one at the end, it could be a great way to compare students' progress. Again, it could also be used to administer a final test.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Free
  • Easy to setup and manage quizzes
  • Really fantastic reporting
  • Automatic Scoring

Cons
  • Can be a bit complicated if setting up private classes where the instructor must create all the students
  • Quiz question formats are limited. I would like to see more high-tech options (matching, drag and drop).


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References

Whitaker, L. (2012, March 20). Adding a Class to your QuizStar Account. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wk8IVY-EVvQ.

Whitaker, L. (2012, March 20). Creating a Quiz in QuizStar. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kWmQnSO1pto.

Whitaker, L. (2012, March 19). Register for QuizStar. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xkXE3ttByfw.