High-stakes exams, like mid-terms and finals, can be a bane to the instructors that have to administer them. This is particularly true in large classes, where educational assessments need to be an accurate measure of student learning without taking a prohibitively long time to grade. Further, frequent formative assessments are often even more difficult to integrate into the regular class routine.
University of Akron Professor of Chemistry David Perry faced those familiar challenges teaching Principles of Chemistry II, a class with between 100 and 200 students. He wanted to employ a combination of daily testing and active learning in his classes, but the antiquated bubble sheets that were available limited him to multiple-choice questions and proved cumbersome as formative assessment tools.