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What Are The Characteristics of Quality Questions?

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1 What Are The Characteristics of Quality Questions?
Presenters Keisha Becerra Carol Malone- Cooper Susan McGinnis

2 What are Quality Questions?
Quality questions need to be “ Purposeful, engaging, and consequential. They are aligned with learning goals, awaken students curiosity and class participation, and result in desired learning outcomes.” ( Anderson & Krathwohl, 2001; Bloom, 1987)

3 Four Identified Characteristics of Quality Questions
The questions promote one or more carefully defined instructional purposes. The questions focus on important content The questions facilitate thinking at a stipulated cognitive level. The questions communicate clearly what is being asked.

4 Quality Questions Are Purposeful
The purpose of a question depends on the instructional objective. When teachers are clear about the purposes of questions, they can better assess student responses. The two typical classroom contexts for questioning are recitation and discussion.

5 Recitation The teacher poses a question, and after the student responds the teacher “ confirms the rightness or wrongness of the answer.” Recitation questions are usually low – level questions. These questions ask students to recall facts, provide definitions, or demonstrate comprehension. These questions rarely engage students in thinking deeply about an issue.

6 When Should Teachers use Recitation Questions?
To review before a test To see if students have read and understood a passage To check on completion and/or comprehension of homework To assess what students know about a topic To cue students on important content To provide opportunities for drill and practice To model good questioning for students

7 Discussion The teacher might pose a single, provocative, open-ended question and ask other questions on for clarification. Students do not wait for the teacher’s permission to speak and they do not look to the teacher for assessment of responses; they engage in dialogue with one another, listen respectfully, and make their own evaluations.

8 When Should Teachers use Discussion Questions?
To give students practice in thinking out loud To encourage students to hear and respect diverse points of view To provide an opportunity for students to speculate, formulate hypotheses, and offer evidence to support ideas To encourage students to make connections that will help them move information to long- term memory To create opportunities for students to transfer learning to different contexts or situations

9 Quality Questions Have a Clear Content Focus
Once teachers have specified the purpose(s) for their question, they must wrestle with the question” On what specific content do I want to pose a question to students?” Teachers must consider the alignment of their content to standards.

10 Understand by Design Frameworks
Grant Wiggins and Jay McTighe created the Understand by Design Framework. This model advocates the backward design process, which consists of three stages: Worth Being Familiar With Important to Know and Do Enduring Understanding

11 Questioning Circle Framework
The Questioning Circle framework was developed by Christenbury and Kelly in Teachers questions can fall into one, two or all three domains. The most powerful questions are found in the intersection of the three areas. External Reality ( Other Subjects) Personal Knowledge ( Student Experience) The Subject ( Term Matter)

12 Quality Questions engage students at varied and appropriate cognitive levels
Questions are tools for both information seeking and information processing (Hunkins, 1995). A variety of tools exist for helping identify and distinguish different kinds of thinking or cognition.

13 Bloom’s Taxidermy AFTER BEFORE

14 Bloom’s Taxonomy Revised
The most significant change is the move from a one-dimensional to a two-dimensional scheme of classification Knowledge ~ Remember Comprehension ~ Understand Application ~ Apply Analysis ~ Analyze Synthesis ~ Evaluate Evaluation ~ Create

15 Differences between the Original and Revised Bloom’s
New levels are expressed as verbs instead of nouns A number of the roots are changed (remember is distinguishable from knowledge) The order of the last two levels has been reversed – evaluate precedes create A new feature – each of the six cognitive dimensions also have two or more specific cognitive processes (p )

16 Differences between the Original and Revised Bloom’s
The majority of the categories relate to the ability to transfer knowledge, not just remember.

17 Remember Recognize or recall information
Students must be able to retrieve information if they are to use it in more cognitively complex operations. KEY – teachers must embed such questions within the “larger task of constructing new knowledge or solving new problems” (Anderson & Krathwohl, 2001, pp ).

18 Understand A first step for teachers is to facilitate connections between new knowledge and prior knowledge and experiences. If a question is to move a student beyond the remember level, it must include information that the student did not encounter during initial instruction. Compare the circumstances surrounding the United States’ acquisition of the Louisiana Purchase to those surrounding its purchase of Alaska.

19 Apply The taxonomy distinguishes between two types of application:
Execution – applying a procedure to a familiar task Using the information provided on a U.S. map, estimate the length in miles of the Mississippi River. Implementation – (more difficult) applying a procedure to an unfamiliar task Identify the U.S. cities you believe developed after the advent of rail travel.

20 Analyze Involves breaking down a whole (idea or problem) into its component parts and determining how the parts are related one to another ~ Fact vs. Opinion, Reality vs. Fantasy ~ Connecting conclusions with supportive statements ~ Relevant vs. Extraneous Information ~ Determining the relationship between and among ideas What are some of the primary themes in Lewis and Clark’s journals?

21 Evaluate Involves making a judgment based upon the application of a set of standards or criteria. The KEY – Identification and use of standards and criteria. ~ Quality ~ Effectiveness ~ Efficiency ~ Consistency

22 Evaluate Checking – making judgments about internal consistency
Were the social policies of President Johnson’s administration consistent with his voting record as a U.S. senator? Critiquing – making judgments based upon external criteria Which of these two paintings best represent impressionist art?

23 Create Engages students in putting together disparate parts to form a new whole “Create results in a new product that is something that can be observed and that is more than the students’ beginning materials”(Anderson & Krathwohl, 2001, p. 65). Design a security system that would protect the safety of all students in our school with minimal infringement on individual rights.

24 The Knowledge Dimension
Factual knowledge – “bits of information”, terminology, specific details and elements Conceptual knowledge – more complex, organized information (classifications, categories, principles and generalizations, etc…) Procedural knowledge – how to do something – skills and algorithms, techniques, methods, “when to do what” in specific domains Metacognitive knowledge – knowledge about cognition in general as well as an awareness of and knowledge about one’s own cognition

25 Marzano’s Taxonomy Recitation questions – simply retrieve information previously learned What factors contributed to the stock market crash of 1929? Construction questions – require students to construct new knowledge that has not been previously learned How did the public reaction to the fall of the stock market following September 11, 2001, compare to the Crash of 1929?

26 Gallagher and Aschner’s Taxonomy
Recall – equivalent with the remember level in Bloom’s Convergent questions – one correct response, a narrowing or focusing of the thought process Divergent questions – no one right answer; must think of new and different possibilities that are justifiable

27 Reading Teacher’s Taxonomy
Reading the lines – the answer is in the text Reading between the lines – inference Reading beyond the lines – bring your perspective to the text (Evaluate/Create in Bloom’s)

28 Walsh and Satte’s Taxonomy
Recall questions = remember in Bloom’s ~ Simply recall what they have learned Use questions = understand, apply and analyze in Bloom’s ~ Do something with what they have learned Create questions = create / evaluate ~Use their imaginations to go beyond what they have learned or been told

29 Considerations in Choosing a Taxonomy
The developmental levels of your students The content areas you teach Your own personal preferences and professional strengths The school faculty choosing one taxonomy (beneficial)

30 Caveats regarding the use of Bloom’s
The cognitive level of the response is dependent on the context in which a question is posed and the student’s experiential and knowledge background 50% of answers to oral questions do not match the cognitive level of the questions Most textbook questions are at the lowest level of Bloom’s ALL students can think at higher level if given adequate support and instruction!

31 Quality questions are clear and concise
Write the question Flaws are easier to see when printed Reread to check for a clear meaning

32 Quality questions are clear and concise
Wording is critical to the ultimate quality of the question Consider the students’ perspective Can students translate the question into their own words?

33 Quality questions are clear and concise
Common understanding of the kind of response the question is seeking Wording and gender are important considerations Appropriate to students’ age, grade, achievement level, cultural background, etc.

34 Quality questions are clear and concise
Syntax – “the structure of the sentence and the manner in which words are put together” Grammatically correct Address only one issue for response – single barreled Sufficient contextual information to arrive at an appropriate answer

35 Quality questions are clear and concise
Acid test of a quality question Does it feel right? Does it sound right? Is it easy to say? Is it easy to understand?

36 Quality questions are clear and concise
Quality questions are seldom asked by chance. Carefully crafted pivotal questions Move class into the heart of the lesson Move student thinking to higher levels Can be time consuming and difficult, but well worth the effort Stockpile questions and share with others

37 Quality questions are clear and concise
From the asking/answering of pivotal questions other questions emerge Clarify Extend understandings Extend the frontier of student learning

38 Quality questions are clear and concise
“Muscles of Classroom Questions” must be crafted according to: Instructional purpose Content focus Desired cognitive level Learner needs and interests

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