Higher Order Thinking Skills: What is a WebQuest?

by frances 8. January 2010 07:57

To create a great WebQuest, you need to have appropriate high level TASKS that promote Higher Order Thinking Skills (HOTS).

Sometimes this is not easy - especially if you have chosen the wrong topic to create into a WebQuest. If you are going to create a WebQuest, think about what tasks you want the students to undertake and then ask the question: Do these tasks promote HOTS?

Here is an excellent example of a WebQuest that has HOTS: Whose Restaurant will Rule?

Unfortunately, this WebQuest is now only in the Internet Archive. However, this means that you can still use this WebQuest. You might consider putting it into our Web 2.0 Short-cut WebQuest Authoring Tool (SWAT) acknowledging the original source, updating the links and using it with your students! [NB. WebQuest Direct has over 1,200 WebQuests reviewed now in the Internet Archive Only which could be used in this way!!!]
WebQuest Direct's Review of this WebQuest:
Key Learning Areas: HSIE / SOSE / Social Studies; Personal Development, Health & PE (PDHPE); Technology & Design
Key Competencies: Collecting, analysing and organising information; Communicating Ideas and information; Planning and organising activities; Solving problems; Using technology; Working in a team
Tasks: Analytical; Compilation; Creative Product; Design; Judgement; Persuasion; Research
Grade Levels: Secondary / High School; Business Training
Country: Australia Australia
Language: English
Description: Designed for students in Year 10 studying an integrated course including Technology, Social Studies, Business and Careers and could be adapted for Vocational Education and Training (VET) especially in Hospitality. Could also be used in Health, Nutrition and Food Safety. Students are to to develop and plan for their restaurant.
There are four roles: Head Chef who is responsible for developing the menu, ordering food and ensuring everything runs smoothly in the kitchen; Maitre'd who looks after bookings and the restaurant waiting staff, ensures customers are satisfied and that all runs smoothly on the restaurant floor; Finance Manager who looks after wages, budget, profit, forward planning; and, Public Relations Officer who is in charge of publicity, advertising and promoting the image of the restaurant.
Students are to complete 10 tasks, including investigating and reporting on the Melbourne restaurant industry; developing a detailed business plan; deciding and establishing the look, logo, colour scheme, menu and stationery for their business; creating a spreadsheet to show the repayment of the business loan; preparing a set of photos and images for advertising the restaurant; create a website that effectively promotes the restaurant; creating two promotional pieces; creating a video and/or audio promotion of their restaurant and use Producer to synchronise it with a slideshow; creating an Access database that can be used to efficiently run and manage the restaurant; and, design and create a user manual that will assist the office manager to use what they have created on an ongoing basis.
Teacher's Guide contains Curriculum Standards: Level 6 of the Victorian Essential Learning Standards and some information for teachers. There is also a link to examples of student work. Last updated 2006.
As you can see, this WebQuest contains some excellent HOTS for students to complete - with a messy problem to solve as well. That is the key to a GREAT WebQuest!

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What is a WebQuest?


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