Now that you know what makes a good item and some of the things to avoid, it’s time to start thinking about the item writing process and how to write specific item types.

Step 1: Task Allocation

The first step in the process is allocation of a writing task. Work will be assigned to you by the project manager. You will be allocated tasks through GitHub. The task will inform you:

  • How many items to write

  • Which part of the specification to focus your items on

  • Any requirements relating to item types or difficulty

Note that you may be given multiple tasks at the same time with different requirements for different assessments so take careful note of the individual task.

Step 2: Author items

You will then have 7 days to complete the writing task. Before you start writing you should create your own branch to work on that is clearly labelled. We recommend including your name and the issue number. You should always branch from staging as this is considered the active development branch. If no staging branch exists, let the team know and they will create one. Always create a new branch for every new task. Even if you have two tasks on the same pool, create one branch for each. This allows us to split up reviews and merge subsets of items more easily.

Useful references for this stage:

Step 3: Submit for Review

Once you have completed the task and you are happy that all items meet the guidelines, you will need to submit them for review. You should do this in GitHub, creating a pull request from your branch back to the staging branch. Your pull request should include:

  • The latest link to expert review

  • The item keys for all items you have added (for now you will need to check this information in GitHub).

You should assign the pull request to the DataCamp project manager who will then allocate it to a reviewer.

Step 4: Item review

The items will then be passed to a reviewer who will check against all of the criteria in the guidelines and provide feedback. Details of what is expected of you as a reviewer can be found here.

Step 5: Item Refinement

Once reviewed you will have an opportunity to resolve any issues with items. It is expected that at this point revisions are minor (e.g. fixing a spelling mistake). If requested revisions are more significant they may require re-review, however, in such a case it is likely that the item should have been rejected.

Rejected items should not be revised. They will not be re-reviewed. If they have not been removed from the submission before return to the project manager, they will do so. You will not be compensated for work on rejected items. If you disagree with the rejection, you should in the first instance raise it with the project manager.

Step 6: Internal Review

After revisions your items will be passed to the project manager who will ensure that you are compensated for the items that have been accepted. At this point your responsibility to the items ends. Some items may undergo an internal review before being added to the live pool. You will be informed of any relevant feedback on items from this review.

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