Many people (and I bet those who teach in education are cheering right now) don’t believe that tests will measure what students can actually do with what they learn. Sure, they can pick the right bubble, a 25% chance for the right answer, and if they can pick the right bubble every time, will that tell you that that student could solve a difficult problem they’re facing once they’re on the job?
Because of this issue, options are available like Authentic Assessment (click for a quick online definition). Quickly, it is a means of assessing students that includes real-life situations and application of knowledge versus traditional testing. What instructors look for is the THINKING behind what is done, the PROCESS of doing/creating that was involved, as well as the overall quality of what was assigned instead merely recalling information.
If you do wish to rely on testing, OnCourse offers you Tests and Surveys with many options to discourage cheating. Test banks can be used/downloaded from publishers, although I don’t recommend that unless you follow the book closely as the test will measure only the knowledge given in the chapters.
In the online environment there are many ways to encourage more authentic assessment, even though they might take a bit more time on your part in terms of managing them and grading. Some examples are projects that allow for creativity in presentation, portfolios of work, group work and projects, case study responses, and more.
If you would like to experiment with more authentic assessment, here’s a link to an online resource from Park University’s CETL: Incorporating Authentic Assessment.
In addition, we’ve included a pdf of another article from Educause that is worth the download and read!Educause Article