Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs) are the most fundamental questions included in the assessment sheet where the student has to choose the correct answer from the multiple options, to be able to answer the question. MCQs usually have a single correct ‘option’, however in few cases the student is asked to select ‘more than one’ options to justify the answer. Every subject has a section in the examination paper which is devoted to MCQs. Be it Math, GK, Science, or English, multiple choice format questions are popular means of evaluation.
Many competitive entrance exams in fields such as banking, MBA, and even UPSC (Union Public Service Commission) follow this format to admit the best of the best candidates to undertake the course.
Advantages of MCQs
One of the most prominent reason is that the answer is a part of the ‘four’ choices and students who struggle to remember facts, may recollect it by looking at the options. Other than this, the following are its advantages;
Easy to Create
Once you have a bank of important questions, the examiner can easily form the MCQs and also include different variations of the same question. In the digital age that we live in, there are tools that assist the educator in promoting important MCQs from the syllabus, thereby making the job of the teacher even easier. Markezy is one such easy to use platform that provides an online question bank across numerous subjects and also suggestions newer questions, as the syllabus is covered through the course of the sessions. Markezy has gained popularity in schools across Dubai and UAE, and is slowly gaining popularity in other regions across the globe.
Since the answer is pretty straightforward and pre-defined checking the answer sheets doesn’t take much time. Unlike essay type questions, one does not have to read two pages of lengthy answers and then assign marks. Markezy gives teachers the option to scan the exam paper and auto compute the score at just a click. This would mean eliminating errors in checking and reducing the hassle of carrying loads of paper home to check it in the wee hours of the night. If you wish to learn more about Markezy’s availability in GCC or other Middle East countries; visit Markezy
Elimination of Bias
Though exams are conducted and evaluated with utmost anonymity to avoid partiality while checking, there are instances where the teachers have slipped in extra mark for their favorite student and got them to pass the exam. With MCQs there is no chance for bias and the student’s knowledge is tested basis what he or she knows.
Covers Wider Range Of Topics
There is good scope of asking many MCQs in the paper since each one carries limited marks. Therefore, no important topic is left out and all of it can be included in MCQs. Also, if students think that they can take it lightly and not study for MCQs they might be mistaken. Many a times, the four choices are deliberately tweaked for difficulty such that all the answers seem like the right one. There is no scope to bluff and the selected choice is either ‘right’ or ‘wrong’.
Disadvantages of MCQs
The Guessing Game
Since there are defined options and one has to be the correct answer, students might resort to guessing or tic tac toe technique to tick the right answer. If the teacher propped further and maybe took a follow-up oral exam later, it would be rather shocking to find out that the student actually doesn’t know anything and was just good at guessing.
Creates More Confusion
Even though the students know the right answer, they may not be able to answer it correctly. What does that mean? When the examinee sees multiple options to the same question, he may be subject to confusion and suddenly the correct answer blanks out. Especially in Math, where there are many ways of solving a problem and calculation that the student might come to and the options that are enlisted, might be different and mislead one further.
Only a Part of The Concept is Tested
In subjective questions, the answer is written in sentences and explained by the learners in proper paragraphs. There is scope to express one’s thoughts freely and the teacher thus is able to gauge the level of understanding. This is amiss when it comes to MCQs. Often Historical events, scientific explanations, and math theorems are best tested when in subjective format.
To conclude, there are equal pros and cons to MCQs, however a balance of both subjective and MCQs is the best way to go forward while setting the exam paper.