Beneficial Assessment Outcomes from Frequent Testing

By Abdulrazaq Imam.

Published by The International Journal of Assessment and Evaluation

Format Price
Article: Print $US10.00
Published online: March 12, 2014 $US5.00

When faced with deadlines, people tend to procrastinate. Students do this by delaying study time until examinations are so close the only option left is cramming. This procrastination scallop is a well-established behavioral phenomenon in both human and infrahuman species. Distributed practice also has been demonstrated to be superior to massed practice in the cognitive literature. Frequent testing provides opportunities for distributed practice and rehearsals that fill the gap between acquisition and the big test, creating its own mini-scallops. In sections of Introductory Psychology, Research Design, and Learning and Behavior courses, standard pre-post testing was conducted at the start and end of the semester over many years. No weekly quizzes were required in one course for a few semesters, in contrast to the remaining courses. Mean assessment gains were substantially bigger with than without weekly quizzes and the difference was statistically significant. The results indicate beneficial assessment gains in learning from frequent quizzes and suggest potential alternative strategies for faculty to implement low-cost effective instructional practices that students may benefit from

Keywords: Pedagogy, Quantitative Assessment Outcomes, Methodology

International Journal of Assessment and Evaluation, Volume 20, Issue 2, March 2014, pp.15-23. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Published online: March 12, 2014 (Article: Electronic (PDF File; 695.723KB)).

Dr. Abdulrazaq Imam

Associate Professor, Department of Psychology, John Carroll University, University Heights, OH, USA

Dr. Abdulrazaq Imam was born in Ilorin, Nigeria and is currently an Associate Professor at John Carroll University where he has been teaching learning and behavior for over 10 years. He received his MA and Ph.D. in Psychology from West Virginia University and was postdoctoral fellow in behavioral pharmacology at Rutgers University and behavioral economics at Walter Reed Army Institute of Research. He has taught previously at the University of Abuja, Nigeria, and the American University of Beirut, Lebanon. His interests range from animal and human learning to philosophy of science and effective pedagogic practices in higher education. He is a member of the Association for Behavior Analysis International and the Association for Psychological Science.