Monthly Self Assessment Quiz

Flexed paced, or continual enrolment allows high school students to sign up at any time and then begin to work on their courses at their pace. Continual enrollment means students are starting and finishing at different times of the year. For example, a student may begin in September and go through to June. Another student, may commence in November and be finished in January. Determining if continually enrolling students are engaged can be very time-consuming. These students do not need to wait for prescribed dates to begin a course. The student registers for a course and completes an introduction assignment, then school’s office checks to make sure the student is not cross-enrolled in that class at another school and has the prerequisites. How does a continual enrolling class (a class where students are at all different places within the course) engage students?[/caption]Engaging learners should include activities that use “student time and energy in ways that deepen learning and change the way students think and act” (National Survey of Student Engagement Report, 2006. p. 9). One way to engage students is through group work. Umble, Umble & Artz, (2008), found that group work was more productive than students working on their own. These authors describe that group projects introduce variety in contemplation and understanding of the content.

Carnegie Mellon UniversityCarnegie Mellon University (CMU) in Pittsburgh, PA use the following quote for the benefits of group work “More hands make for lighter work.” “Two heads are better than one.” “The more the merrier.” In general group work is more productive, creative and motivational. They give a list of benefits and references to why group work is essential ( They continue to describe the advantages of group work are not guaranteed and can backfire. I can attest to this as both a teacher and a student. Group work can help the online instructor by having fewer projects to mark as well as there may not be enough diversity in topics to give out to everyone.

Group Work I have found that group work does not work with online flexed paced or continual enrollment classes. Over the next few weeks and months, I will begin to describe the different ways I engage students. With students at all places within the courses how does one tell where students are? Do you check how many times they log into the course? Or look to see when they submitted their last assignment? These ideas can be easily checked, but they are time-consuming. A colleague of mine introduced a monthly assignment where students had to answer questions on a MS Word document about where they were in the course. Open each assignment took a long time as well to mark/check. Last year, I implemented a monthly quiz—using the quiz tool in the LMS. If you were in the course for two months, then you completed the quiz twice. If you took ten months to complete the course then you needed to complete the quiz ten times. The following are the questions that I ask:

1. What have you found interesting about this course so far?
2. What problems have you encountered so far, if any? It could be about a particular assignment or your time to do this course work, etc.
3. Is there anything else you want to tell me about your progress in this course so far?
4. I have completed up to and including assignment
5. I have completed up to and including the online quiz
6. In the “Discussion – Presentations – Screen Capture Video” project I have completed up to and including
7. I have completed the following face-to-face exams.
8. The month ___ I intend to complete the course is

The first three are open-ended questions, while the remaining are multiple choice. There are no wrong answers. The students had the whole month to complete the monthly quiz. I email students if they have not written the monthly quiz by the end of the third week. During the first week of the next month, I would go through each quiz and make sure to respond to each student and contacted those by phone that did not complete the monthly quiz.

What other question(s) should I be asking?

How do you track which engaging students in a continual enrollment school?


National Survey of Student Engagement Report. (2006). /NSSE_2006_Annual_Report/docs/NSSE_2006_Annual_Report.pdf

Umble, E., Ubmle, M., & Artz, K. (2008). Enhancing Undergraduates’ Capabilities Through Team-Based Competitions: The Edward Jones Challenge. Decision Sciences Journal of Innovative Education, 6 (1), 127.

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