Effective Questioning Techniques

1. Effective questions are asked in a clear, non-ambiguous manner.

2. Purposeful questions lead to the achievement of the lesson.

3. Effective questions are brief, using specific language.

4. The wording of effective questions is adapted to the level of the students in the class.

5. The appropriateness of using lower level questions and higher level questions depends on several factors including lesson objectives, content, and learner characteristics.

6. Effective questioners avoid using yes/no questions that may confuse lesson focus, waste time, and encourage guessing.

7. Fill-in-the-blank questions should be avoided.

8. Directions should not be phrased as questions.

9. By not repeating questions and student responses, you may develop better student listening habits and more attentive behavior.

10. Questions should not be answered by the one asking the question.

11. It is very important to establish the expectation that every question asked requires a response.

12. In many cases, an effective pattern in asking questions is to ask, pause, then call on an individual.

13. It is sometimes helpful to give advance warning to a shy or reluctant student or when calling on an inattentive student by calling out the student?s name first.

14. Wait-time occurs after the question is asked and before a response is elicited. Increasing wait-time up to five seconds, for those questions requiring wait-time, results in higher quality, more correct, more complete answers.

15. It is important that the teacher provide feedback for student responses.

16. When appropriate, it is effective to incorporate the students? ideas into the teachers? restructuring of the response.

17. There are several criteria for evaluating student responses -- plausibility, clarity, support and originality.

18. Wait-time II is the time after a student response and before the teacher gives feedback. Wait-time at this point encourages further student thinking.

19. Teaching students what constitutes appropriate responses to various types of questions is an important aspect.

20. A wide distribution of student responses is preferable to having only a few students actively involved.

21. A variety of response patterns may be used -- choral, individual volunteer, individual non-volunteer, nonverbal, et al.

22. During a recitation, there are times when summarizing previously made points would be helpful.

23. Having students evaluate their own answers or the responses of other students is an effective technique.

24. It has been shown that, at times, teachers demonstrate different questioning techniques when dealing with lower ability students, calling on them less often and proving shorter wait-time, more cues, and more praise for marginal responses.