A Closer Look at Multiple Choice Tests

The new semester is officially underway–students are back, campus is bustling, and classrooms are full. Of course, faculty have been preparing for classes for quite some time now–so it feels like we’ve been “back” for much longer than a few days–and the educational corner of the Internet has been full of assignment and classroom management suggestions.

The folks over at ProfHacker always have great ideas, but this guest post by Jonathan Sterne, an Associate Professor in the Department of Art History and Communication Studies at McGill University, contains some strategies that may be of particular interest to TCU faculty teaching large sections and/or using iClickers.

Sterne offers a solid strategy for developing multiple choice exams, and while he pitches the quizzes as an alternative to using clickers in large sections, I think the two methods could be easily combined. One could adopt Sterne’s test-writing methods to generate clicker polling activities for students, including the “semi-open book” technique.

What are your thoughts? If you use clickers on TCU’s campus, have you ever tried a method like the one Sterne describes? If not, what are some strategies you’ve found particularly successful?

Back to school – spring 2013

Welcome back to school for spring 2013, TCU Faculty!

It’s a busy time of year for everyone, but we wanted to share some useful information with you:

Syllabus Template

Need to update your syllabus with the latest TCU policies, or want to include information about TurnItIn, Pearson LearningStudio Help or campus resources?  Check out our Syllabus Template (Word doc) to compare with your existing syllabus.

Syllabus redesign

Looking for more in-depth help with your syllabus and want a consultation?  Please look at our Syllabus & Course Design page for information about setting up a meeting with our Faculty Development team.

Pearson LearningStudio

Training: The first place for faculty to start is our online documentation & videos.   We have Faculty Open Labs where you can drop in for assistance with your course shell; additionally, our staff is leading themed workshops on specific LearningStudio tools.  See the workshop schedule for more information.

Verify Enrollments: If you are using Pearson LearningStudio this semester, be sure that you verify your enrollments.  If there are any discrepancies, please notify the eLearning staff so that they can resolve them for you.   Review the how to information for verifying your enrollments.

Videos for students:  If you are worried about students not knowing how to use new tools you are implementing, you might want to consider linking to our how to videos for students, or sending the links out to them via email.   Each of the tools has either a PDF or how to video (or both) for many topics.   Be sure to check out the student how to videos on our website.


Interested in adopting i<Clicker for your classes?  Contact our i>clicker rep, Alise for information about adoption & training, or stop in at one of our I>clicker themed open labs.  Check the workshop schedule for lab times.

To adopt iClicker for your classroom, please contact:

Alise Alford

Also, please notify that you are adopting iClicker

To order remotes for students to purchase through the bookstore, simply provide the information below. A new i>clicker remote is $40.00 and a new i>Clicker 2 remote is $46.65. Remotes can be sold back at the end of the semester. It’s definitely not too late to get i>clicker in your classroom!

ISBN: 0-7167-7939-0
Product name – i>clicker
Vendor name – Macmillan (MPS, formerly VHPS)
Vendor website –

Upcoming Koehler Center Events

We have some great upcoming Koehler Center Events for spring:

  • Reacting to the Past
  • Teacher-Scholar Writing Workshop: Balancing the Roles of the Teacher-Scholar
  • Target Knows If You’re Pregnant: How Data Leads to Personalized Learning

To find out more information about these events, please go to our Koehler Events page.

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New: Pearson LearningStudio Password Reset

Effective January 10, 2013

In a continued effort to improve user experience, security, and adherence with industry standards, TCU, in partnership with Pearson has released a password reset feature for Pearson LearningStudio.

There are several items of particular note:

  • Users logging on to Pearson LearningStudio for the first time post-release, will be prompted to create security questions. The prompt can be dismissed, but it will continue to display after login until the questions are completed.
    Create Security Questions for future password reset

    Texas Christian University Additional Security

    The above image displays the Security prompt users will see upon login to Pearson LearningStudio via or upon selecting a class from the LearningStudio QuickLink icon within in

    The user must input an email address where they wish to receive the password rest link. Please note that this email address will not overwrite the user’s email address used in their Pearson Learning Studio profile.

  • The login page now includes a password reset link that will require users to answer their security questions prior to reset. Once the user has verified his/her identity, the user will receive an email with a link to initiate a password reset. This link will be valid for 24 hours.
  • Pearson’s 24/7 Tech Support will not provide passwords to users. Upon request Tech Support will send a password reset link to the email on record for the user’s account in our system. If the user does not have access to the email address on record, the user will need to contact for assistance.

Read more about the new security measures on our website.