Developing and validating multiple choice tests
For example, they are not an effective way to test students’ ability to organize thoughts or articulate explanations or creative ideas.
The cognitive load is increased when the stem is constructed with an initial or interior blank, so this construction should be avoided.In constructing multiple choice items to test higher order thinking, it can also be helpful to design problems that require multilogical thinking, where multilogical thinking is defined as “thinking that requires knowledge of more than one fact to logically and systematically apply concepts to a …problem” (Morrison and Free, 2001, page 20).Finally, designing alternatives that require a high level of discrimination can also contribute to multiple choice items that test higher-order thinking.There is little difference in difficulty, discrimination, and test score reliability among items containing two, three, and four distractors. , in which some or all of the alternatives consist of different combinations of options.As with “all of the above” answers, a sophisticated test-taker can use partial knowledge to achieve a correct answer. Savvy test-takers can use information in one question to answer another question, reducing the validity of the test.
In addition, the objective scoring associated with multiple choice test items frees them from problems with scorer inconsistency that can plague scoring of essay questions.