The book “Make it Stick” by Brown et. al, (2014) is a wonderful research-based how-to guide for promoting learning-as in remembering. In particular, the book discusses testing. It is helpful for exploring exactly how to make long term learning (and remembering) occur by using testing as a tool.
Brown et. al. share that the test itself can promote learning simply by encouraging recall. I have heard (and said myself) “Oh, now I get it!”….after the test.
“If we stop thinking of testing as a dipstick to measure learning-if we think of it as practicing retrieval of learning from memory rather than ‘testing’, we open ourselves to another possibility; the use of testing as a tool for learning”
Brown et. al discuss testing groups as an extension of study groups. In the real-world, students pool information, work together, and justify their perspectives. Might a team test in which students each have their own hard copy (so are accountable for their own explanations) encourage them to discuss, deepen their ability to explain and justify, and most importantly, to connect ideas and concepts?
In this way, they are recalling info. explored and discussed in class, in a higher-stakes, but more realistic format.
Just a thought….