Quizzes for knowledge building and making assessments fun – in an era of digital learning

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Quizzing as a game or hobby has been part of our collective fabric of society for ages. From the time Bournvita Quiz Contest started to air on All India Radio in the early ’70s to the current and one of the most popular TV shows in India – Kaun Banega Crorepati, generations of Indian’s have grown up pursuing quizzing as a hobby and thousands of quiz clubs or quiz societies dot our schools, colleges, neighborhoods, and communities all across the country.

In the last decade, digital quizzing has truly taken off primarily because our classrooms became more technology-enabled and organizations both in the public and private sector have adapted to social media and technology platforms to engage with their target audiences.

Quizzing and Knowledge Building

Participation in quizzes whether in person or online is a great way to build one’s knowledge around any subject. Let me illustrate this with a personal example – in the early 2000’s I was a management student in Bengaluru, at the time, most of the college fests in the city had a ‘Business Quiz’ as a part of the various competitions that college fests typically have. Sometimes these quizzes were run internally and sometimes through a professional quizzing organization or a quizmaster, as a student with a background in science I was not accustomed to various aspects of business, economics, and finance as a management student is supposed to be, and participating in these business quizzes taught me a lot about history, famous persons, companies, finance and markets which I remember to have come in very handy when the campus placement season came around.

And my story isn’t unique, I know a lot of people, especially students, who built their knowledge base around technology, automobiles, art and culture, and many other areas by participating in quiz shows.

A wonderful illustration of quizzing as a knowledge-building platform is currently offered by two government bodies – the Embassy of Sweden, New Delhi is running the Sweden India Nobel Memorial Quiz – an event where undergraduate and postgraduate students in India are able to learn about Sweden – its history, innovation, art and culture, business, sustainability, climate action, gender equality and of course the Nobel prize.

Another interesting quizzing initiative is being currently run by the Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India titled “Bharat Ko Janiye” (Know India) for non-resident Indians and foreign nationals with the winners receiving the prize from the Honorable Prime Minister of India, Mr. Narendra Modi.

Both these initiatives are a great example of how one can use quizzing to connect and engage with a given set of audience to build knowledge and awareness of any topic of desire

Quizzing and Assessments

Let’s face it, for most of us “quizzing” is a dreaded word, it conjures up the vision of the teacher walking into the classroom and offering us a “spot quiz” or a “surprise test” on a subject that isn’t our favorite, and the stress it bought to us at the moment. However, today teachers all across the world are using innovative technology such as Kahoot, Quizlet, etc that use game design and game mechanics to make the quiz interesting.  And not just in classrooms but in our workplaces too, the Learning and Development teams are increasingly using such tools to make mandatory assessments around HR policies, environment, health and safety, product knowledge, programming, etc

The ability to compete with peers, receive positive reinforcements, overcoming challenges, etc that such gamified technology offers makes the assessment less boring and enhances the experience of the person taking such assessment. They also have a positive impact on driving learning outcomes.

Conclusion

In the Covid-19 impacted times that we are in, the use of quizzing as a fun way of knowledge building and assessments has got a huge impetus worldwide and would remain so in the foreseeable future. 

About the Author

Based in Toronto, ON, Raj Dam has been a quiz enthusiast since his childhood. In 2010 he founded QuizWorks and built it to be among one of India’s leading quizzing companies. QuizWorks uses quizzing, gamification, and digital technology to engage audiences and has worked with various organizations across Not for profits, Public sector undertakings, and Fortune 500 organizations in India, Middle East, and North America.

QuizWorks has won multiple awards and accolades from organizations such as UK Trade and Investment, Aditya Birla group, and People Matters. Raj loves quizzing and as a professional Quizmaster has hosted 1000+ quizzes in India and abroad.

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