A Survey on the Levels of Questioning of ELT: A Case Study in an Indonesian Tertiary Education

Rido Imam Ashadi, Nazriani Lubis


This present study focused on examining the levels of questions in Indonesia tertiary education. A survey research was conducted in one of the private universities in North Sumatra. The English summative assessment in an undergraduate education was used as target of survey.  There were a collection of questions that had been administered by four English lecturers from Faculty of English Education in Universitas Muslim Nusantara (UMN) Al-Washliyah Medan, Indonesia. The sample of research included the sixty five questions of summative tests. The qualitative content analysis which is based on Gallagher/Aschner Bloom Classification System used to categorize the questions. It was found that the lower order thinking level still dominated the question types (69%). There was only 31% higher order questions used on the summative test.



Thinking level of questions, English subjects, summative assessment

Full Text:



Anil, B. (2015). Higher–Order Questioning in SL classrooms–a study. The Buckingham Journal of Language and Linguistics, 1, 47-55.

Collins, C. (1991). Reading instruction that increases thinking abilities. Journal of Reading, 34(7), 510-516.

DeMarrais, K. (2004). Qualitative interview studies: Learning through experience. Foundations for research: Methods of inquiry in education and the social sciences, 51-68.

Di Gropello, E., Kruse, A., & Tandon, P. (2011). Skills for the labor market in Indonesia: trends in demand, gaps, and supply. World Bank Publications.

DeWaelsche, S. A. (2015). Critical thinking, questioning and student engagement in Korean university English courses. Linguistics and Education, 32, 131-147.

Forehand, M. (2010). Bloom’s taxonomy. Emerging perspectives on learning, teaching, and technology, 41-47.

Harklau, L. (2000). From the “good kids” to the “worst”: Representations of English language learners across educational settings. TESOL quarterly, 34(1), 35-67.

Hill, J. D., & Flynn, K. (2008). Asking the right questions. Journal of Staff Development, 29(1), 46-52.

Inamullah, H. M. (2011). A study of lower-order and higher-order questions at secondary level. Asian Social Science, 7(9), 149.

Iskandar, D., & Senam, S. (2015). Studi kemampuan guru kimia sma lulusan UNY dalam mengembangkan soal UAS berbasis HOTS. Jurnal Inovasi Pendidikan IPA, 1(1), 65-72.

Johnson, E., & Jenkins, J. (2009). Formative and summative assessment. Psychology of classroom learning: An encyclopedia. Detroit: Macmillan Reference.

Mayring, P. (2000). Qualitative Content Analysis. Forum Qualitative Sozialforschung / Forum: Qualitative Social Research, 1(2). Retrieved from http://www.qualitative-research.net/index.php/fqs/article/view/1089/2385

Merriam, S. B. (2009). Qualitative research: A guide to design and implementation. John Wiley & Sons.

McComas, W. F., & Abraham, L. (2004). Asking More Effective Questions.Rossier School of Education.

McMillan, J. H. (2008). Assessment essentials for standards-based education. Corwin Press.

McNamara, D. R. (1981). Teaching Skill: the Question of Questi. Educational Research, 23(2), 104-109.

Nagappan, R. (2001). Language teaching and the enhancement of higher-order thinking skills. Anthology series-SEAMEO regional language centre, 190-223.

Nitko, A. J., & Brookhart, S. M. (2011). Educational Assessment of Students.Boston: Pearson Education, Inc.

Okanlawon, A. E., & Adeoti, Y. F. (2014). Content analysis of West African senior school certificate chemistry examination questions according to cognitive complexity. Ife Psychologia, 22(2), 14.

Pagliaro, M. M. (2011). Exemplary classroom questioning: practices to promote thinking and learning. R&L Education.

Redfield, D. L., & Rousseau, E. W. (1981). A meta-analysis of experimental research on teacher questioning behavior. Review of educational research, 51(2), 237-245.

Shen, P., & Yodkhumlue, B. (2012). A Case Study of Teacher's Questioning and Students' Critical Thinking in College EFL Reading Classroom. International Journal of English Linguistics, 2(1), 199.

Shuhidan, S., Hamilton, M., & D'Souza, D. (2009). A taxonomic study of novice programming summative assessment. In Proceedings of the Eleventh Australasian Conference on Computing Education-Volume 95 (pp. 147-156). Australian Computer Society, Inc.

Soleimani, H., & Kheiri, S. (2016). An Evaluation of TEFL Postgraduates' Testing Classroom Activities and Assignments Based on Bloom's Revised Taxonomy. Theory and Practice in Language Studies, 6(4), 861.

Sunggingwati, D., & Nguyen, H. T. M. (2013). Teachers’ questioning in reading lessons: A case study in Indonesia. Electronic Journal of Foreign Language Teaching, 10(1), 80-95.

Tikkanen, G., & Aksela, M. (2012). Analysis of Finnish chemistry matriculation examination questions according to cognitive complexity. Nordic Studies in Science Education, 8(3), 257-268.

Vogler, K. E. (2005). Improve your verbal questioning. The Clearing House: A Journal of Educational Strategies, Issues and Ideas, 79(2), 98-103.

Wilen, W. W. (1991). Questioning skills, for teachers. What research says to the teacher?National Education Association.

Zhang, Y., & Wildemuth, B. M. (2009). Unstructured interviews. In B. Wildemuth (Ed.), Applications of social research methods to questions in information and library science (pp.222-231). Westport, CT: Libraries Unlimited.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.7575/aiac.alls.v.8n.3p.26


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

2010-2022 (CC-BY) Australian International Academic Centre PTY.LTD.

Advances in Language and Literary Studies

You may require to add the 'aiac.org.au' domain to your e-mail 'safe list’ If you do not receive e-mail in your 'inbox'. Otherwise, you may check your 'Spam mail' or 'junk mail' folders.