When developing a digital test it is important to choose the right question form(s). We are all familiar with different types of question forms, such as open and closed questions. But there are also all kinds of variations imaginable. The question you ask depends on the knowledge, insights and skills the candidate needs to acquire. In this blog we look at the usefulness and use of different closed question types.
Open questions are used more to ascertain the opinion or train of thought of the candidate. The candidate can provide a lot of detailed information in the answer.
When asking a closed question, the correct answer is among the answer options. This allows you to ask very specific questions. You use this form of question when you are looking for a concrete answer. These questions are automatically checked during digital testing, which saves a considerable amount of time. See Table 1 for an overview of all the different closed question types.
|Multiple choice question||Single hotspot question||Single entry question|
|Multiple select question||Multiple hotspot question||Multiple entry question|
|Option list question||Numerical entry question||Ranking question|
|Drag-and-drop question||Matching question/Matrix question||Video hotspot question|
For a brief explanation of the different closed question types, see the end of the blog.
Do you have to use all kinds of questions to make an interesting exam? No, certainly not! Candidates often do not care whether or not the exam is ‘boring’ in the eyes of the developer. To them, passing is more important than ‘fun’. However, the points below are relevant reasons to start using different question types.
A ranking question, for example, is very suitable for correctly indicating an order in a step-by-step plan. If you have to measure this with a multiple choice question, it requires a lot more reading becomes a bit of a puzzle. In addition, this somewhat reduces the gambling chance. In the example below, the candidate is required to place four elements in the correct order. The odds of getting the right answer ‘by chance’ are significantly lower.
Note that the question types do not have to be equal to each other. One question can be much more elaborate (with more good answers), than the other question. In that case, the probability scores (see: ‘What is a probability score?’) are different. Still, you want every candidate to have a comparable exam and thus have the same probability of passing the exam. This is difficult if you want to use the question types interchangeably in an exam or item bank. You can solve this by making questions with not too many options. This also ensures that the required time per question does not vary too much and that the objectivity is guaranteed. Also set standards per question form; what is the maximum number of alternatives? Is there also a minimum?
In order to further promote the equivalence of questions, you can choose to use partial scoring. The candidate does not have to have the entire question right to be able to score points. A part of the maximum score can be obtained by giving a partly correct answer.
The probability score is the score a candidate can achieve, if he chooses/guesses the correct answer, but does not know the answer. In a sense, the candidate is ‘gifted’ this score. For closed questions, the probability score is greater than 0. For multiple choice questions with four alternatives it is 0.25% and with three alternatives 0.33% of the total score for the question in question. For a question that allows you to score 1 point, the probability score is 0.25 and 0.33, respectively.
Have you also become enthusiastic about the use of different question types and the equivalence of questions? See below for a complete overview of different (digital) question types. Would you like to know more? Then contact us.
Here, one answer has to be selected from the answers offered.
Here, one answer has to be selected from the answers offered. Here, multiple answers can be selected from the options offered.
Here, one answer has to be selected from the answers offered. A text fragment contains pull-down menus from which the candidate chooses the correct answer.
Here, one answer has to be selected from the answers offered. An answer can be entered by clicking on the correct location within the image, where an arrow will appear.
Examples of application: geography, understanding photos and illustrations about a certain subject.
Multiple answers can be entered by clicking on the correct locations within the image. Examples of application: geography, understanding photos and illustrations about a certain subject.
Here, one answer has to be selected from the answers offered. This question type contains a video that has to be clicked on at the right moment.
Examples of application: indicate moment in a conversation, indicate moment when something special happens or something goes wrong.
Here, one answer has to be selected from the answers offered. The answer options (text or images) must be put in the correct order.
Examples of application: methods, techniques, procedures.
Objects (text or images) must be dragged to the right places within an image or table.
Examples of application: names of flowers with pictures of flowers, what belongs to what.
This question consists of a number of rows and columns, where the candidate puts crosses in the correct row/column.
Example of application: indicate the presence or absence of a certain characteristic of each term.
Here, one answer has to be selected from the answers offered. An answer can be entered in the form of a number.
Example of application: calculate mortgage interest, sales tax, profit.
Here, one answer has to be selected from the answers offered. An answer, in the form of a short text or a single word, can be entered in the input field.
Example of application: questions for which the correct answer would be obvious when used in a multiple choice question.
Here, one answer has to be selected from the answers offered. Multiple answers, both textually and numerically, can be entered in the offered input fields.
Example of application: questions for which the correct answer would be obvious when used in a multiple choice question, calculations.