Free Tips for Quality Multiple Answer Question

There are different ways of creating questions. Some questions require simple yes or no answers; some require students/respondents to fill in the gap with information.

Some questions offer respondents an array of possible answers. These particular types of questions are called multi answer questions. Sometimes people refer to them as multiple-choice questions. This article shows readers simple ways of creating multi answer questions

The multiple-choice format is commonly used in educational testing, market surveys, and elections. For people creating survey questions, selecting the right answers is the main focus of a multiple-response question.

Offering multiple-choice questions makes respondents more willing to participate in your survey. They need not look for answers anywhere since the possible answers are already included.

Creating answers that are rich in information makes it easier for your respondents to make a choice. This makes it easy for you to analyze your data.

person writing on white paper
Photo by Nguyen Dang Hoang Nhu on Unsplash

How to Create Multi Answer Questions

The tips are best used for setting multiple-choice questions for students. You should understand that this question type has two major parts. The first is the stem (a question or an incomplete statement), and the list of answers are the second.

Use Familiar Language

You should use language that the students would be familiar with. Even if you’re setting trick questions, it is still important that the questions are written in a way they will understand easily. It isn’t ideal to introduce new words and terminologies they aren’t familiar with.

Avoid Obviously Wrong Answers

Obviously, wrong answers make it easy for students to find a way around to select the correct answer.

They can eliminate obviously wrong answers to have a better chance of getting the correct answer. It doesn’t mean you shouldn’t include distractors. Instead, you should provide options that are not obviously wrong. Look at these examples:

What is the longest river in the world by length?

  • Atlantic Ocean
  • Pacific Ocean
  • Amazon River
  • Red Sea

The answer is quite obvious here because all other options are not rivers. Only Amazon is. Compare the options to these.

  • Mississippi River
  • Nile River
  • Amazon River
  • Jordan River

This second set of options makes the task a bit harder. Adding distractors similar to the correct answer makes it hard for them to choose randomly.

Avoid Negative Wording If You Can

Negative wording easily gets students confused. This is why even well students may fail if you allow too many negatively worded stems in your multiple answers questions. In any case, you can still use negative wording. But be sure to highlight the negative word by writing it in all caps.

Advantages of Multiple Answers Questions

Questions with multiple-answer options have the advantage of being cheaper to conduct for a large number of respondents or students. Another advantage is that students are graded purely on their knowledge of the topic since factors like handwriting are irrelevant.

In addition, if the test-takers know how to use tick boxes and online answer sheets, we can rely on their responses with clarity. Another advantage is that the exam result is objective since it doesn’t vary from evaluator to evaluator. It eliminates evaluator bias.

Wrapping Up

If you need question types that are easy to create and evaluate, MCQs are great options. Multiple-answer questions provide respondents with a list of possible answers.

The respondents have to choose the appropriate answer from the list. When done right, it can help examiners test a large number of students without stress.

Since there’s a list of possible answers already, respondents don’t have much to do. This saves time and gives the evaluator a quality result. 

Abir is a data analyst and researcher. Among her interests are artificial intelligence, machine learning, and natural language processing. As a humanitarian and educator, she actively supports women in tech and promotes diversity.

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