Testing is a touchy topic, mainly for students, but I’m sure there are some teachers out there who aren’t the biggest fan of grading tests. However you feel, numerous studies have pointed to the many benefits of testing/quizzing your students regularly. Quizzing your students will help motivate them, help them with information retrieval, encourage attendance, as well as various other benefits. Regular testing also has its benefits for teachers as well. It can help a teacher assess whether or not the students are grasping information. It will also let a teacher know if they need to adjust their teaching strategies.
Advantages of Quizzing Your Students
We broke down the advantages into three major categories: motivation, feedback, and teamwork. We feel that these broad categories adequately portray the advantages that regular quizzing can have on students and teachers.
As shocking as it is, quizzes are a way of motivating your students. If a student knows that there is going to be a quiz, they will be more likely to show up to class, pay attention while they are in class, encourage students to study, and reduce procrastination. Quizzes also give the teacher an opportunity to reward those who perform well. Hopefully, the reward system will encourage students who did not perform as well to put in more of an effort for the next quiz.
The feedback provided by testing is not only beneficial for students, but for the teachers as well. Quizzes allow students to study more efficiently as they can focus on questions or topics they struggled with. Additionally, regular quizzing will help increase students retrieval of knowledge. In other words, quizzes will teach students’ brains to organize information into clusters; allowing them to recall information more easily.
As far as teachers go, the feedback from tests will tell the teacher which students are grasping the content and which are not. Teachers might use this feedback to identify a specific students learning patterns and determine which students need extra help. If the class as a whole is struggling, the teacher may want to consider revisiting certain topics or rethinking their lesson plans.
Quizzes give a teacher flexibility. Since they are informal, a quiz can be administered as a group activity. Along with encouraging teamwork, communication amongst students will increase and new friends will be made. One effective way to encourage healthy debate is to split the classroom into groups and play a game, like Jeopardy. Reward the students who answer the most questions correctly with a homework pass or a gift, like candy or a toy.