Evaluation: Test Creation Tips

Here are a few tips for creating effective multiple choice questions:

1) Provide a scenario in which the learner has to apply knowledge previously learned to answer the question. Avoid straight memorization.
2) Encourage the learner to draw conclusions from the content provided.
3) When several items are based on a single case or problem situation, make sure that each question is independent of the other questions (one doesn’t provide the answer for another).
4) Avoid negative statements and double negatives.
5) Keep the questions from being offensive to any religion, gender, sexual preference or other group. Avoid using gender specific references such as “female tellers” or “male supervisors” simply use the terms “teller” or “supervisor”.
6) Avoid the pronoun “You” for referring to the test taker or respondent. Use a title of a position rather than you. The person taking the test may do a procedure or a process different than the standard.
7) Always include a noun after the phrase “Which of the Following.” This helps the test taker to maintain focus on the stem.
8) Use either a direct question or an incomplete statement for the stem, whichever is more appropriate to present the question. Placing options at the end of the stem is better than having blank spaces in the middle of the question.
9) As much information as possible should be stated in the stem as opposed to the answers.
10) For a step-by-step procedure, write the quesiton so the learner has to anticipate the next step and apply the knowledge to solve a problem.

Content Guide

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Karl Kapp
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