Using Memory Aids in a Question

In order to make your questions stronger and more relatable to your students when creating content for Formative and Summative assessments you may consider using scenario-driven questions or ‘Memory Aids’. This method brings context to your questions and gives a basis for memory recall.

What to remember when writing ‘Memory Aid’ Questions:    

  •   Try not to let the scenario become too complex and lead the student off the main basis of the question
  •   Make sure all the information is required whilst applying relatable information to add additional meaning
  •   Remember to keep the vocabulary consistent with the student’s level of understanding and use examples from course materials when developing the questions.
 Question without a Memory Aid

Question with a Memory Aid

Scenario – Stem Questions

Using Memory Aids are also an effective way of testing higher level learning outcomes, as additional information is often required when you create a Memory Aid for a question intended to test learning outcomes such as Analysis or Evaluation.

The clearest way to structure a multiple choice question for this purpose is to present a situation which clearly highlights the problem or idea before continuing onto the actual question text and then create the stem of the question which offers the action the student needs to take.

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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