[LMB] OT: Education

Andrew Lambdin-Abraham andrew at firehead.org
Fri, 1 Feb 2002 10:17:43 -0600

On Friday, February 1, 2002, at 07:58 AM, George S. Vaughan wrote:

>> Try writing a *challenging* multiple-choice
>> test (one that transcends tv game show trivia and actually provokes 
>> thought
>> instead of simple rote responses).
> See the Differential Equations final I took in college. Lots of
> similar answers, only one exactly correct.  Perhaps you were thinking
> of a different domain?

There are two parts to a test: Showing you know the material, and 
showing that you can apply it.  The latter can only be tested by 
interaction, be that an oral exam, an essay, whatever.  The answer 
cannot come from the teacher, no matter how how hard it may be to find.

On the other hand, it is quite possible to write multiple choice tests 
that prove knowledge of a subject.  My US History teacher said he had a 
MC test with one question once while getting his masters.  26 answers 
though, with a list of events in various orders and you needed to pick 
the correct one.