When developing test questions using a cognitive approach, ask yourself the following questions:
- What cognitive processes do students need to perform in order to answer the question correctly?
- Do students need to simply identify concepts or do they need to do something with the concept, such as apply it to a given set of circumstances?
- What tacit knowledge do students need in order to answer the question correctly?
- What is assumed or what needs to be inferred when answering the question?
- Do the distractors (if writing a multiple choice test) elicit the targeted cognitive process from the students?
- Can the question be reasoned through using principles and concepts from the course, or is it a "you know it or you don't" type of question?