Just-in-Time Teaching (JiTT) Assessments

In this session,  I would like to talk a little bit more about fighting the Google Effect with retrieval practice, just In time teaching (JITT), and low stakes quizzing through active learning. So, to start off…

Do You Remember Jenny’s Number?

In 350 BCE, Aristotle wrote that “exercise in repeatedly recalling a thing strengthens the memory.”

However, seeing repeatedly is not enough for learning.


Just-in-Time Teaching (JiTT) is a strategy that promotes the use of class time for more active learning. Originally developed by Gregor Novak and colleagues, JiTT relies on a feedback loop between online learning materials and the classroom (Novak et al., 1999). Teachers use online assessment tools to ask students to perform Warm-ups, Puzzles, and Goodfors  The students answers to the assignments are delivered to the instructor a few hours before class starts. The teacher looks over student responses to see where students are and adapts the lesson accordingly. Teachers can also now use the  responses as scaffolding on which to build learning.

How Do I Get Started?

Prior to class, give your students a slightly provocative and memorable statement/question that is open interpretation. Have your students rephrase the question in their own words, and make them take a stand and justify their position. To do this, they will have to examine prior knowledge, consult the course resources, and perhaps discuss the issue with classmates. The goal is to have them actively engage with the content and activate schema related to the content.

Tools of the Trade

  • Google Form
  • EdPuzzle
  • Canvas Graded Survey

Benefits of JITT

  • JITT questions can be reused on exams, and student responses make for excellent distractors.
  • Student responses will help you to beat the Curse of Knowledge
  • You can grade HW for thoughtful effort.
  • You can include metacognitive questions to get students to think about their thinking in discipline.
  • You can complete the feedback loop and provide personal responses to questions this let’s students know that you value them and their effort.
  • Because much of the beginning scaffolding work is done at home by the learners, this frees up additional class time for Active learning.

Active Learning Ideas

Now that you know how to make your Just In Time Teaching assignments, let’s discuss some active learning ideas.

  1. Find the Flaw (Google Drive or Canvas Annotations))
  2. Quiz Quiz Trade (Post it Printable)
  3. Gallery Walk & Talks (Canvas Media)
  4. Roving Reporters (Google Hangouts)
  5. Four Corners  (Any Classroom))
  6. Elevator Pitching  (Concentric Circles Anywhere)
  7. Playing 21 with 1 Minute Papers (Peer Grading in Canvavs)
  8. Top 5 or Top 10 Assignments
  9. Six Degrees (Smart Devices)
  10. Virtual Field trips (Street View or Google Expeditions)

Consider letting students use their phones in the first five minutes of class for a  Reverse Image SearchesGap Fill, Fact or Fiction, Show Me What You Know, or Six Degrees type assignment. Then share some fun and strategies with them.

Google Easter Eggs – Atari Breakout – Askew – Google in 1998 – Barrel Rolls

6 Degrees of Kevin Bacon – What is Your Bacon Number

Guns & Rock-n-Roll – How to Rock a Google Search

PowerSearching with Google

Works Cited

Novak, G, Patterson, E.T., Gavrin, A.D., and Christian, W. (1999). Just-In-Time Teaching: Blending Active Learning with Web Technology,Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.