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Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Multiple Choice Questions

Some Eleven Plus children appear to hate doing multiple choice tests. But some Eleven Plus examiners prefer setting multiple choice tests because:

• They are easy to mark. The choices are often a matter of choosing between A B C D or E.

• They can be marked by a computer.

• The numbers can be added up the computer.

• The computer can prepare the list of results in order.

Other Eleven Plus tests are set by an examiner who wants to look at how problems are solved. The examiner would be looking for a `good’ answer.

The person who sets the question, however, is going to be aware that there are many variables than can affect the result.

When the marker has to mark a large number of tests a number of factors can affect the result:

• Fatigue on the part of the examiner

• An unbalanced marking of what is `good’. This could be where some questions can be marked down simply because of the repetitive nature of the answers.

Suppose more than one marker is involved then these variables can be multiplied by the number of people involved.

But occasionally your Eleven Plus child could be variable – hence the remark:: “Oh, it just depends on how he is on the day!”

So what the Eleven Plus examiner has to do is try to devise a test where the marking of the test and the test itself is perfectly reliable. So then if your child did not do as well as expected then you could attribute any fluctuations to the performance of your child `on the day’.

So if a test is set for four thousand or even seven thousand children it is lot easier to prepare a multiple choice test. Your role, therefore, is to suggest to your child the advantages of doing multiple choice questions

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