Professors Ask Students to Create Their Own Exams
By Nada Helmy, Nour Eltigani and Lobna Shrief
(Cairo, April 1) - The Center for Learning and Teaching (CLT) held a workshop about student-generated exams facilitated by Professors Fady Morcos and Ezzeldin Yazeed on Wednesday, April 1, 2015 at the American University in Cairo (AUC).
Both professors shared their stories about the topic. Morcos created a Facebook page for one of his classes and let students ask and answer questions so the questions can appear in their final. On the other hand, Yazeed allowed his construction students to create a midterm with its model answers. Both professors found their techniques very effective.
According to Yazeed, a professor of structure of engineering in the construction engineering department, “This strategy helps the professor to know how much the students digest from this course.”
Also, Morcos, who teaches scientific thinking and creative thinking courses, emphasized to his small audience of professors, “Student- generated questions enhance knowledge gaps and identify inaccurate expectations.”
The CLT has facilitated several workshops that promote the application of technology in classrooms and coursework including “Gamifying Your Classroom” that was held in November 2014 and featured Morcos. The CLT will be holding other workshops during the spring 2015 semester.
At the end of the workshop, both professors sat down with the rest of the attendees and started sharing their feedback on the workshop. Even though the workshop only lasted for an hour, all of the attendees shared positive comments about the new examination technique.
Associate Professor of Practice Maha Bali recalled that the idea of student-generated exams was sparked in another CLT workshop that she facilitated. Bali assured, “I feel that more people should try that kind of thing, I was really happy with the workshop.”
Attendee Hadya El Minyawi, an instructor of rhetoric and composition, believes that “the workshop today gave me a new idea of having students study for the exam and make them cognitively involved in the material as they generate their own exams and taking ownership for their own learning.”
Student-generated exams are found to be effective by Morcos and Yazeed. Both professors will keep using this approach again in their future courses and advise other professors to do so too.