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  1. #1
    SurfDoctor is offline Moderator
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    What do you think about open-book, online tests in DL classes? Are most too easy?

    I have only done a few online, open-book tests that were not a joke. I have had only a few with strict time limits that prevented you from looking up too much info, thus insuring that you at least knew something.

    I haven't experienced much online testing at Liberty yet, so I can't speak to their tests, but most of my other online schools have given tests that were ridiculously easy. Lots of time, so easy to cheat, so easy to google the info you needed. What's up with that? Isn't it a mockery of real academic testing? Are proctored exams the only to have a legitimate test?
    "If ignorance is bliss, why are the ignorant so angry?" Shannon Wheeler

  2. #2
    Maniac Craniac is offline Moderator
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    I have no experience at all with them, but I do have an opinion

    If it is a multiple choice or short answer exam, where one could simply copy the book word-for-word, then absolutely not!

    However, for essay exams, or for any of a number of different types of exams that I may not be aware of, I can see where an open book would not preclude a reliable assessment of performance.

    In fact, the only main difference between an open book test and a closed book test, is that the latter requires one to memorize. If the test is not about memorization, then I don't see any conflict.

    Now we cue the people who have the appropriate experience to tear my comment apart and make me wish I never posted it
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  3. #3
    SurfDoctor is offline Moderator
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    Most of the tests I have taken online were open book, multiple choice tests. There is no way they can ensure that people won't cheat on a closed book test and they tend not to do essay tests because they are a lot of work to grade.

    I would prefer a legitimate test or give me no test at all and only papers to write.
    "If ignorance is bliss, why are the ignorant so angry?" Shannon Wheeler

  4. #4
    Anthony Pina is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelOliver View Post
    I have only done a few online, open-book tests that were not a joke. I have had only a few with strict time limits that prevented you from looking up too much info, thus insuring that you at least knew something.

    I haven't experienced much online testing at Liberty yet, so I can't speak to their tests, but most of my other online schools have given tests that were ridiculously easy. Lots of time, so easy to cheat, so easy to google the info you needed. What's up with that? Isn't it a mockery of real academic testing? Are proctored exams the only to have a legitimate test?
    Personally, after all of these years and research into better ways of assessment, I wish that we would stop using technology to deliver the same old multiple guess "scantron" tests. People are up in arms as to how to prevent cheating on online multiple choice tests. The answer is that the only way to do so is to figure out how to make our students moral and ethical people who don't cheat. We do not have a technology to do that, nor have we eliminated cheating in face-to-face classrooms (or even during proctored tests). Face-to-face or camera-based proctored tests make cheating more difficult, but does not eliminate it.

    I have not given a multiple-choice exam in my online courses in years, except for low stakes (or ungraded) practice and immediate feedback activities. My students tedn to do progressive projects, where they do pieces that fit together to solve a problem or to plete a larger project. There is less incentive to cheat than there is on a high stakes multiple choice test, as the students are working on something tangible that gives them a skill (as opposed to how well they memorize information or can find it in a textbook).
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  5. #5
    MISin08 is offline Registered User
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    In the tests I have had (12 classes), one class had ridiculously easy tests (exact copy of the textbook site quizzes), one was slightly more rigorous (you could ace them if you took the "practice" tests over and over long enough) and the others were pretty hard, at least if one wanted an A. I felt I had to know the material if I wanted to answer all items in time and know where in the "open book" to look for help on any stinkers. This was all business and technology subjects, btw. For math & science, proctored might be better.

    Not sure how proctored works with the short terms we have in DL. A proctored no-notes midterm after a month would be doable but it would certainly change my study routine. OTOH I'm considering the MSc in Business Analysis and Consulting at U of Strathclyde. The taught portion (consists of one-month and two-month modules) has several proctored exams, but exam dates are scheduled so you have more than the one or two months to learn the material before sitting the exam.

    Phillip

  6. #6
    SurfDoctor is offline Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anthony Pina View Post
    Personally, after all of these years and research into better ways of assessment, I wish that we would stop using technology to deliver the same old multiple guess "scantron" tests. People are up in arms as to how to prevent cheating on online multiple choice tests. The answer is that the only way to do so is to figure out how to make our students moral and ethical people who don't cheat. We do not have a technology to do that, nor have we eliminated cheating in face-to-face classrooms (or even during proctored tests). Face-to-face or camera-based proctored tests make cheating more difficult, but does not eliminate it.

    I have not given a multiple-choice exam in my online courses in years, except for low stakes (or ungraded) practice and immediate feedback activities. My students tedn to do progressive projects, where they do pieces that fit together to solve a problem or to plete a larger project. There is less incentive to cheat than there is on a high stakes multiple choice test, as the students are working on something tangible that gives them a skill (as opposed to how well they memorize information or can find it in a textbook).
    Very good. The "memorize, regurgitate and forget" tests that we have all taken a million times in our academic careers need to be replaced with something. What's the point of taking something that didn't work all that well in the first place, and adapting it to online classes? I love the progressive project idea you mention. I just experienced my first progressive project at Liberty and it was a great learning experience.
    "If ignorance is bliss, why are the ignorant so angry?" Shannon Wheeler

  7. #7
    MISin08 is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelOliver View Post
    ...give me no test at all and only papers to write.
    Well, put that way, sure.

    Phillip

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  9. #8
    cookderosa is offline Resident Chef
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    I had 2 classes (Anatomy and Physiology I and II) that were very hard and had open book tests. What made them hard was that the questions were not based on the text or lab manual. I "get" the idea- you want the student to have a comprehensive understanding of the principles vs memorizing the info...but as a student starting from scratch in a subject that I knew NOTHING about, believe me, I needed to learn and memorize basics. Don't ask me about why- when I can hardly tell you what. It was terrible to be frank. I aced my homework, but couldn't pull higher than a B+ on any of my M/C quizzes or exams - I think we had about 12 quizzes and 2 exams for each class. That was 32 weeks of hell. I had my book, my lab manual, my google tab, my supplementary resources, dummies guides, etc. Still couldn't ace those tests.
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  10. #9
    SurfDoctor is offline Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by cookderosa View Post
    I had 2 classes (Anatomy and Physiology I and II) that were very hard and had open book tests. What made them hard was that the questions were not based on the text or lab manual. I "get" the idea- you want the student to have a comprehensive understanding of the principles vs memorizing the info...but as a student starting from scratch in a subject that I knew NOTHING about, believe me, I needed to learn and memorize basics. Don't ask me about why- when I can hardly tell you what. It was terrible to be frank. I aced my homework, but couldn't pull higher than a B+ on any of my M/C quizzes or exams - I think we had about 12 quizzes and 2 exams for each class. That was 32 weeks of hell. I had my book, my lab manual, my google tab, my supplementary resources, dummies guides, etc. Still couldn't ace those tests.
    Wow, that's tough. Not surprising for med student classes, though.
    "If ignorance is bliss, why are the ignorant so angry?" Shannon Wheeler

  11. #10
    SurfDoctor is offline Moderator
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    Quote Originally Posted by MISin08 View Post
    Well, put that way, sure.

    Phillip
    I choose to read your reply as "Well put! That way! Sure!"
    "If ignorance is bliss, why are the ignorant so angry?" Shannon Wheeler

  12. #11
    eilla05 is offline Registered User
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    I have only had a few tests (im thinking less than 15 or so) for all of the classes I have taken online and its been quite a few! Most of them were timed and multiple choice and I rarely got perfect scores. I have had a few proctored exams and they were harder but I still could have cheated had I wanted to! In a computer class I took I had to have my final proctored and the computer I took it on was in a closed room so I was by myself with access to the internet (and no I didnt cheat!).

    I did have one class that had like 50 questions and 2.5 hour time limit but the questions were mini essays and it sucked really, id rather write papers but at this point I am sick of those as well...lol

    I think tests can be beneficial as long as the time is taken to change the questions and wording to make the challenging and there is a time limit placed.
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  13. #12
    AUTiger00 is offline Registered User
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    I had a graduate level economics course where the professor gave you the test, you had 3 days to turn the exam in. The professor graduated from one of the military acadamies and worked on a honor code. You were to only work on the exam for two hours, you could read the questions and look through your notes and the text, but as soon as you started writing you were to put all of your notes and text away. His reasoning was that in your career you would have access to resources while you worked on projects. I liked his reasoning and the trust he had in his students. I never cheated, never exceeded the two hours we were allowed to work on the exam. The exams were HARD, but I loved that professor. I got a B+ in his class and would have taken other courses from him had they been offered.
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  14. #13
    StefanM is offline Registered User
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    Most of the online, open-book tests I have taken at LU have been quite easy, with the exception of the tests in two classes.

    My business law class was difficult, primarily because of timing. The quizzes were 25 questions, and we had 25 minutes to complete the quiz. A number of the questions had questions about the application of law, so it wasn't just a "look it up and write it down" kind of test.

    My finance class was also difficult due to the subject matter. You really had to have a good grasp of the material to answer the questions, even if you had access to the text.

  15. #14
    MISin08 is offline Registered User
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    Quote Originally Posted by MichaelOliver View Post
    I choose to read your reply as "Well put! That way! Sure!"
    Good choice.

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  17. #15
    Lerner is offline Registered User
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    I had mixed experience.

    All the tests that required proctor and taken at college near by had time limit and if you didn't study or don't know the material you surely will fail.

    The proctor didn't allow any browsing on the net. There was also a time limit.

    In my case every third class had supervised/proctored exam.

    As to non-supervised exams, wile open book they required knowledge above text book,
    And I estimate 50% of problems were not taken from the text book but developed by the university.

    It was very hard to earn A or even a B.

  18. #16
    proracer is offline Registered User
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    OK, I like your question......

    Any test taken any where can be cheated on.

    It is sad to say that there are people that will cheat. You can go through the internet and can find sites dedicated to helping you pass your course.

    These internet sites even have the multiple choice questions answered. There are sites that have papers that are written on numerous subjects that can be purchased or even downloaded from the site for free.

    My question is....Why?

    I took my classes to learn, not to cheat and just get through.

    I think the best question hear is.....

    Do you want to learn the material or not? Eventually it will catch up with you. One day the cheater could be in a job that required him or her to perform their job based on what was supposed to have been learned in school.....what do they do then?

    I see people at work that do just that....they try to cover their rear and it does not work....

    They get fired.....

    I am in a technical field and it is very easy to spot those that know and those that don't. In my field, people can get hurt or even killed if they do not know their job....

    Jim
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