A cost–benefit analysis for developing item banks in higher education

Silvester Draaijer*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book / Report / Conference proceedingConference contributionAcademicpeer-review


Item banks in higher education can be regarded as important assets to increasing the quality of education and assessment. An item bank allows for the flexible administration of computer-based achievement tests for summative purposes, as well as quizzes for formative purposes. Developing item banks, however, can require quite an investment. A well-worked-out business case can help with convincing stakeholders to start an item bank development project. An important part of such a business case should be the increase in item quality and the estimated reduction in costs, particularly for the collaborative development of an item bank. However, a theoretical underpinning of a business case, incorporating considerations based on classical test theory is lacking in the literature. Therefore, a model is described to make estimations of reductions in misclassifications and per-unit costs. Examples are presented of the likelihood of reducing misclassifications and cost per unit based on findings in the literature. Implications for research and practice are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTechnology Enhanced Assessment
Subtitle of host publication21st International Conference, TEA 2018, Amsterdam, The Netherlands, December 10–11, 2018, Revised Selected Papers
EditorsSilvester Draaijer, Eric Ras, Desirée Joosten-ten Brinke
PublisherSpringer Verlag
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9783030252649
ISBN (Print)9783030252632
Publication statusPublished - 2019
Event21st International Conference on Technology Enhanced Assessment, TEA 2018 - Amsterdam, Netherlands
Duration: 10 Dec 201811 Dec 2018

Publication series

NameCommunications in Computer and Information Science
ISSN (Print)1865-0929


Conference21st International Conference on Technology Enhanced Assessment, TEA 2018


  • Economics
  • Educational measurement
  • Higher education
  • Item banking
  • MCQs
  • Multiple-choice questions
  • Question development
  • Test development


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