Questions to Assess Knowledge

Here are some tips to consider when testing Bloom's lowest level learning objective, Knowledge (Bloom and Krathwohl, 1956.) 

When testing knowledge you are simply assessing the student’s ability to recall subject matter. Therefore an essay question type would not often be necessary.  It would only be necessary to use an essay question type if you were asking the student to recollect a large amount of subject matter but this may be better presented in a series of short answer questions.

  • You may choose to use a short answer question in this instance for the student to recall information however dependant on which action verb you wish the student to demonstrate, a multiple choice or either/or question could prove more effective.
  • If you wish for the student to recall information then a short answer question would be effective. However, if you wish for a student to identify some information then a multiple choice or either/or question would be the most effective.
  • You should attempt to link the verb with the question type when testing knowledge.

Suggested Question Types



Note: The purpose of these articles is to provide you with general advice in the fields of assessment and testing. These articles are not intended to replace any regulations or instructions provided by your organisation, but may be used in conjunction with these materials to support the assessment process.



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