Questionmark Commissions New Work-Learning Research White Paper by Dr. Will Thalheimer on Providing Learners with Feedback

Joan Phaup

Norwalk, CT - June 3, 2008 - A white paper licensed exclusively by assessment technology provider Questionmark and published by Dr. Will Thalheimer of Work-Learning Research explains the latest research on the use of feedback and recommends ways for learning professionals to use it effectively.

Providing Learners with Feedback: Research-based recommendations for training, education, and e-learning is based on Dr. Thalheimer's 10 years of studying research articles from the world's preeminent refereed journals. The paper, which examines the practice of providing stimulus to a participant according to their responses within an assessment, is available in two sections-one for general information and one containing more detailed research references. Both sections can be downloaded from

Thalheimer's research-to-practice report provides perspective on feedback's place in learning, makes recommendations for practice and explains the research that supports them. It treats feedback as an important means of supporting learners in making cognitive connections and helping them retrieve correct information in the future.

Thalheimer explains: "When learners retrieve incorrectly-when they fail to retrieve or when they retrieve the wrong information-feedback is critical because misconceptions must be corrected." Of course, feedback can help people who answer questions correctly, particularly when their answer is a guess or is made with little confidence. Feedback is much less important for high-confidence correct answers.

The paper establishes the context for feedback and the way it functions in the case of both correct and incorrect answers. It then offers recommendations for using feedback

"Instant feedback at an item or topic level is a key advantage of online assessment. The tools the Questionmark provides for delivering feedback is only part of the solution. This paper is part Questionmark's ongoing efforts to sponsor research that provides helpful guidance to learning and assessment professionals. Dr. Thalheimer has done a masterful job of analyzing the available research and distilling practical advice that I'm sure will be valuable to any learning professional."

About Work-Learning Research and Dr. Will Thalheimer Will Thalheimer is a learning-and-performance consultant and research psychologist specializing in learning, cognition, memory, and performance. Dr. Thalheimer has worked in the workplace learning field, beginning in 1985, as an instructional designer, simulation architect, project manager, product leader, trainer, consultant, and researcher. He has a PhD from Columbia University and an MBA from Drexel University. He founded Work-Learning Research in 1998 to help client organizations create learning environments to maximize performance and help learning professionals-instructional designers, e-learning developers, trainers, performance consultants, talent managers, and chief learning officers-utilize research-based knowledge to build effective learning-and-performance solutions. More details are available at

About Questionmark
Questionmark has been producing testing and assessment software since 1988. Businesses, governments, schools, colleges, and universities in more than 50 countries use Questionmark software. Questionmark has more than 2,500 customers using Perception and is a keen supporter of open standards. Typical applications include exams, quizzes, study aids, diagnostic tests, pre-course skills assessments, and course evaluations. Questionmark offers training courses and extensive learning materials designed to improve assessment authoring and management. Complete information is available at

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