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14 Technology-Enhanced Item Types That Promote Critical Thinking

Taryn Baker Taryn Baker   |   23/10/2019

It’s important to make sure that your students are prepared for next-generation assessments by making sure their academic knowledge is up to par, and also making sure that they’re familiar with the technology they will be using to complete exams. By utilizing a web-based program, you’ll be able to familiarize your students with both of these concepts at the same time.

Edmentum International’s solutions include 14 different technology-enhanced item types, requiring them to use higher-order thinking skills. They are designed with Webb’s Depth of Knowledge (DOK) framework and Bloom’s Taxonomy levels in mind. Using both of these frameworks ensures that each question is written to the appropriate difficulty level and that students are exposed to the appropriate content.

To give you a better understanding, let’s take a deeper look into what each item type looks like in our suite of solutions.

2. Hot Spot

In a hot spot question, using their cursor, students identify a location on an image that represents the correct answer to the question.

Hot Spot

2. Matched Pairs

When presented with this format, students drag answers from one section to another to create matching pairs. As shown in the image below, students will drag four answers into the boxes in order to answer the question. In some cases, not all answers will be used. In the example below, all answers are used.

Matched Pairs3. Graphic Gap Match

In this item type, students drag and drop an item(s) into the designated target(s) to form the correct answer(s).

Graphic Gap Match4. Constructed Response

In a constructed response, students create a response using evidence from the question or reading passage to support their view. Students are given a prompt and a text box to respond. Sometimes, there are multiple parts of the question your student must answer. There is also a rubric provided so that students are aware of what they need to do to receive full credit for the question. Once students type in their response, they are able to move on to the next question. These responses are graded by their teacher.

Constructed Response5. Hot Text

In this item type, text choices are identified for students within a passage, and students select the correct text answer(s) using their cursor. In the sample below, students will read the question and select the answer from one of the areas in blue text.

Hot Text6. Cloze

Students select the correct answer from a drop-down box within an equation or sentence in this item type.

Cloze7. Graphing

Students must use provided drawing tools (point, open point, line segment, ray, and/or line) to plot their answer(s) on a coordinate grid.

Graphing8. Fill in the Blank

Students enter an alphanumeric response in an open box within a question. Questions may have more than one open box.

Fill in the Blank

9. Sequence

Students select and move images or phrases to the correct location on the screen, placing them in sequence, to create an overall answer.



10. Graphic Tally

Students must drag and drop a visible or an invisible tile(s) into a designated target(s) to form a correct answer(s). A graphic tally allows for multiple ways that a question can be answered correctly.

Graphic Tally11. Multi-Part

Students must answer two or more parts to a question.


12. Number Line

Students must use provided drawing tools (point, open point, line segment, and/or ray) to plot their answer(s) on a number line.

Number Line

13. Multiple Response

In a multiple-response format, students can select more than one correct answer to a given question.

Multiple Response

14. Equation

Students must enter their response using math notation.


Make sure you take a look at our free resource to encourage critical thinking in your classroom with your students for more ideas on bringing critical thinking to life.

Taryn Baker

Curriculum Developer

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