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I am teaching a university maths module, which is currently taken by approximately 300 undergraduates. By the way, I am teaching in Asia.

Due to the number of undergraduates, tutorial classes are conducted from Monday to Thursday. There comes the problem:

This course consists of 2 in-tutorial quizzes. The quizzes are set very similarly so that the level of difficulty is consistent. However, due to the similarity of question, students from Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday classes can obtain quiz questions and keep practising them. In the end, these students excel while students from Monday do averagely or poorly.

Question: How to deal with this kind of situation? A few solution that I can come out with is to have a mid-term, where everyone sits in a lecture hall.

Another way is to set different questions each day. However, this method does not guarantee the level of difficulty is consistent throughout all tutorial classes.

The last way, which I don't prefer, is to set assignment. However, students tend to copy each other and t defeats the purpose of assignment.

marked as duplicate by RoboKaren, Wrzlprmft, gman, scaaahu, user6726 Nov 4 '15 at 6:01

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    students from Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday classes can obtain quiz questions How do they obtain quiz questions? Can you not return them the quiz papers until next week? – scaaahu Nov 3 '15 at 7:51
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    @scaaahu presumably from talking to one another... – ff524 Nov 3 '15 at 7:53
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    In case cultural differences matter, Asia is very big. Can you be more specific? – Davidmh Nov 3 '15 at 12:25
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However, due to the similarity of question, students from Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday classes can obtain quiz questions and keep practising them. In the end, these students excel while students from Monday do averagely or poorly.

Give all of the students sample questions similar to the quiz questions ahead of time, so that seeing Monday's questions does not become an advantage, and all students can practice the problems and do well. (That's what you want, right?)

You can also set about 80% of the quiz questions to be the same "type" of question across all of the sections, and vary the last 20%. That way the quizzes remain similar in difficulty, but students still have to prepare everything in order to do well, even if they know what was on Monday's quiz.

  • I'd go with the type-similarity of problems. Sample problems are good, but they do have a tendency to produce accusations (from those who fail). Problems of types similar to e.g. homework exercises would necessitate a revision and understanding by all. Though this will add an additional load of coming up with variations on the same theme. – Nox Nov 3 '15 at 11:57

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