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Objective Test Items

Objective Test Items

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Published by api-3738054
A breakdown of objective test items and the criteria for making good questions.
A breakdown of objective test items and the criteria for making good questions.

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Published by: api-3738054 on Oct 18, 2008
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03/18/2014

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OBJECTIVE TEST ITEMS
True \u2013 False Items
Matching Items
Multiple-Choice Items
Completion Items

True-false items are popular
probably because they are quick
and easy to write, or at least they
seem to be. Actually, true-false
items do take less time to write
than good objective items of any
other format, but good true-false
items are not that easy to write.

Unlike true-false items,
matching items represent a
popular and convenient testing
format. Just like good true-false
items, though, good matching
items are not easy to write as
you might think.

Multiple-choice items are
among objective test items
because, contrary to popular
opinion, they enable you to
measure at high levels of the
taxonomy of educational
objectives. We have called
these items objective items,
but they are also referred to as
recognition items.

Completion items are relatively
easy to write. Perhaps the first
test classroom teachers
construct and students take are
completion tests.

Criteria for writing good
True \u2013 False items
Criteria for writing good
Matching items
Criteria for writing good
Multiple-Choice items

Criteria for writing good
Completion or Supply
Items

\u2022
Clear instructions should
be given before the start
of the true \u2013 false test.
\u2022
Construct definitely true or
definitely false
questions/statements.
\u2022
Use relatively short
statements or questions.
\u2022
Keep true and false

questions the same length and more or less the same amount of true as false.

\u2022
Avoid using double-
negative questions.
\u2022
Taking statements directly
from text and presenting
them out of context.
\u2022
Keep both the list of

descriptions and the list
of options fairly short
and Homogeneous. Title
the lists to ensure
homogeneity and
arrange the descriptions
and options in some
logical order.

\u2022
Make sure that all the

options are plausible
distracters for each
description to ensure
homogeneity of lists.

\u2022
The list of descriptions

should contain the
longer phrases or
statements while the
options should consists
of short phrases, words,
or symbols.

\u2022
The stem of the item
should clearly formulate
the problem.
\u2022
Be sure that there is

only one and only one correct or clearly best answer.

\u2022
Be sure wrong answer
choices (distracters) are
plausible.
\u2022
Use negative questions

or statements only if the
knowledge being tested
requires it. Include from
three to five options
(two to four distracters
plus one correct answer)
to optimise testing for
knowledge rather than
encouraging guessing.

\u2022
If at all possible, items

should require a single-
word answer, or a brief
and definite statement.

\u2022
Be sure the question or

statement poses a
problem to the
examinee. A direct
question is often more
desirable than an
incomplete statement.

\u2022
Be sure that the student

is required to produce is
factually correct. Be sure
the language used in the
question is precise and
accurate in relation to
the subject matter area
being tested.

\u2022
Omit only key words;

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