Re: What's the perfect test?

Subject: Re: What's the perfect test?
From: Dave Prior <triton!dap -at- UUSTAR -dot- STARNET -dot- NET>
Date: Wed, 10 May 1995 13:24:10 -0500

Emily Skarzenski wrote:
>- Has anybody ever taken a *good* test during an interview?
>- Is anybody using a test for job candidates that seems to work well?
>- Does anybody have any good ideas that they haven't tried?

><Ding!> (That's the bell sounding for round one.)

I was tested as part of the interview process for my current job.

Most of the documentation development supported a system based on a "forms"
type entry interface with a menu hierarchy. The company wanted to know if
the candidate tech writer could interview a developer and then develop the
user's manual pages and help screens associated with a particular *form*

The test was simple. I was given a printed picture of the screen and
introduced to its developer. My test was to interview the developer and
the write a short description of the screen as I thought it should appear
in the user's manual. My *solution* included a short description of the
screen's purpose, how to navigate from field to field, special characters
to avoid, and special characteristics of unique fields (one required a date
in the format DDMMMYY).

The job interviewer was very impressed with the *solution*.

I think this test format would make a good candidate for a *good* test.
Base the good test on:

- scenario based
- multi skill based (interview, develop text, etc.)
- interactive.


Dave Prior - Product Communications Specialist
(314) 770 - 9619
triton!dap -at- uustar -dot- starnet -dot- net
"My optinions, not STRATA's"

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