The brilliant Diagnostic Questions website has been live for a few months now. After using it once, I’ve completely convinced of its profound positive potential in my classroom. Craig Barton and Simon Woodhead really have outdone themselves in creating a database of diagnostic questions. If you have struggled with anticipating student responses or identifying sources of errors, this resource is a total winner. The site allows teachers to quickly create quizzes that identify student misconceptions. For example, here is a question from the ‘Probability – Experimental’ section:
All of these answers are carefully crafted so that the teacher can see what students aren’t grasping. Here is an example of student work:
Now I’m able to see how this student got 13, rather than just marking it wrong and moving on. Obviously this isn’t a new phenomenon to have students explain their answers to multiple choice questions. However, two key features of this website make it noteworthy above other sites that feature multiple choice questions:
1. The deliberate multiple choice answers chosen to manifest misconceptions
2. The easy-to-use format of the site allowing teachers to quickly create, administer, and grade these quizzes.
Thank you, Mr. Barton and Mr. Woodhead for this tremendously helpful tool. I look forward to contributing questions to your database in the near future.