The University of Auckland

Project #117: Development of an immediate feedback assessment technique platform for collaborative learning



Due to the increase in class sizes in introductory courses, students are becoming more distant from both the instructors and their peers. Consequently, most learning becomes individualised, with less official opportunity for students to engage in debates, discussions, and justifications over conceptually difficult problems. Yet, these activities are what forms a crucial part of internalising threshold concepts. Furthermore, assessments aimed at recognising understanding over factual recall become resource intensive, requiring significant marking hours, quality control and administrative overheads. As such, there is a growing need for devising activities, and exercises, that is both scalable and facilitates autonomy while encouraging collaboration and retention of threshold concepts.

The immediate feedback assessment technique (IF-AT) is an assessment technique that is often used in a team-based learning environment to impart aspects of social constructivism in the learning process which has been shown to improve both academic and collaborative abilities. The IF-AT process involves getting the learners to (1) sit an individual readiness assurance test (usually consists of, but are not limited to, multichoice questions), (2) retake the test in teams (that are heterogenous in answers) and decide on team responses collectively, (3) receive immediate feedback permitting them to reattempt the questions (for reduced points) until the correct answers are selected/revealed. Both the individual and team marks contributes towards the final grade thereby promoting individual accountability and positive interdependence.

Traditionally, this form of assessment is usually done via scratch cards (similar to instant kiwi scratchies) with correct answers embedded. This is both resource intensive, and limiting in question types, and answer placements. The purpose of this project is to develop a platform which enables the facilitation of IF-AT (both individual and team-based).

(a)    create an ‘optimal’ allocation of learners based on the readiness assurance test accounting for heterogeneity,

(b)    enables the facilitation of IF-AT electronically taking into account of autonomy

(c)    generate relevant analytics on student responses.


An investigation into current team-based/collaborative learning techniques and their effectiveness

An investigation into existing tools available for electronic facilitation of team-based learning assessments

An analysis of algorithms to generate optimal allocation of learners based on their readiness test

A prototype of an electronic platform for facilitating IF-AT









Lab allocations have not been finalised