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Exploring the World of WebQuests Sandy Schaufelberger, IPFW Division of Continuing Studies What is a WebQuest? A learning environment Based on a doable, engaging task Supported by Web and other resources Learners inquire & construct meaning Supports learners’ thinking

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exploring the world of webquests
Exploring the World of WebQuests

Sandy Schaufelberger, IPFW Division of Continuing Studies

what is a webquest
What is a WebQuest?
  • A learning environment
  • Based on a doable, engaging task
  • Supported by Web and other resources
  • Learners inquire & construct meaning
  • Supports learners’ thinking
  • Usually collaborative
why use webquests
Why Use WebQuests?
  • Authenticity
  • Active exploration
  • Applied learning
  • Adult connections through collaboration
  • Authentic assessment

“Using information is more important than merely having it.”

who created the webquest
Who Created the WebQuest?
  • Bernie Dodge
  • San Diego State University
  • Outlined in 1995

“WebQuests are designed to use learners' time well, to focus on using information rather than looking for it, and to support learners' thinking at the levels of analysis, synthesis and evaluation.”


two types of webquests

To be completed in 1-3 class periods

Instructional goal is knowledge acquisition and integration


Requires 1 week to 1 month to complete

Instructional goal is extending and refining knowledge

Learners create a product that demonstrates mastery of material

Two Types of WebQuests

Look for these

before you choose

a WebQuest…

other characteristics
Cooperative Learning

Motivational Elements

role playing

simulated interaction

work scenario



Other Characteristics
the introduction
The Introduction
  • Should orient the learner to what is coming
  • Should raise some interest
    • Fun?
    • Important because of global implications?
    • Relevant to the learner’s past and/or future?
    • Attractive?
  • The Titanic (9-12) http://asterix.ednet.lsu.edu/~edtech/webquest/titanic.html
  • Lotto Fever (9-12)
  • http://homepages.moeller.org/tfairbanks/lottofever.htm#Introduction
the task
The Task
  • Dive Right In (K-2)
    • http://projects.edtech.sandi.net/grant/aquarium/tasks.html
  • “The Crucible" & McCarthyism (9-12)
    • http://projects.edtech.sandi.net/hoover/crucible/
  • The Diary of Anne Franke: In Search of Truth (6-8)
    • http://projects.edtech.sandi.net/lewis/annefrank/
  • Zelda’s Zany Zoo (4-5)
    • http://hrsbstaff.ednet.ns.ca/nbarkhou/class/zanyzoo/
  • Should describe what the learner will have produced at the end
    • A PowerPoint presentation?
    • A timeline?
    • A newspaper?
    • A web site?
    • A videotape?
    • An interview?
    • A debate?
    • A radio play?

12 Tasks Link

the process
The Process
  • The teacher suggests the steps that the learner should take to complete the task.
  • The process may include strategies and advice.
  • The process should be clear, concise.
  • Scaffolding is used to guide learning.
  • Gallery of Art-I-Facts (9-12) http://www.teachtheteachers.org/projects/PWalker2/index.htm
  • Fashion Quest (9-12)
  • http://www.mamkschools.org/mhs/class/home_and_career/nelson/fashion_questJune2.htm#Fashion_Review
  • A Personal Journey: Gettysburg (7-12)
  • http://www.pls.uni.edu/nielsen/Gettysburg/process.html

Reviewed to all students or a small number of students

Different reading levels


Web sites








Online Experts


Historical Records

  • An Insect’s Perspective (K-2) http://projects.edtech.sandi.net/grant/insects/process.htm
  • Return of the Great Game (9-12) http://projects.edtech.sandi.net/kearny/greatgame/stage_2.htm
  • Amistad (9-12)


  • Measuring the results of using WebQuests for learning
    • Meaningful, challenging activities
    • Generative
    • Seamless & ongoing
    • Create equity by reducing subjectivity
  • Forms of Assessment
    • Rubrics
    • Checklists
    • Portfolios/Folders
sample evaluations
Sample Evaluations
  • Mad Cow WebQuest (8-12) http://nths.newtrier.k12.il.us/academics/faculty/entman/madcow/index.htm
  • Family of Nations Celebration (1-2) http://projects.edtech.sandi.net/balboa/nations/evaluation.htm
  • The Ocean’s In Trouble (4-5) http://projects.edtech.sandi.net/grant/oceanpollution/evaluation.html
  • Biotech, Inc. (9-10) http://projects.edtech.sandi.net/kearny/biotech/evaluation.htm
the conclusion
The Conclusion
  • To summarize the experience
  • To encourage reflection about the process
  • To extend & generalize what was learned
  • To bring closure to the WebQuest
  • Finding the Lighthouse Diamond Thief (5-8)


  • Genocide: Indifference Can be Tempting (8th)


teacher page notes
Teacher Page/Notes
  • Ideas for implementation
  • Target learners
  • Standards – Write out the Indiana Academic Standards
  • Notes for teaching
  • Examples of student work
  • Designing a Tour of Washington DC http://infosys.pls.uni.edu/nielsen/nielsen/teacherpage.html
  • Hello Dolly http://www.powayschools.com/projects/dolly/toolbox.htm
thank you

Thank you!

Sandy Schaufelberger

ACELINK Project Coordinator/IPFW