Multiple-Choice Tests

Multiple-choice tests have perhaps the most popular testing format in education and elsewhere, and students are certainly aware of multiple-choice items. Multiple-choice test items begin with the problem typically expressed as an incomplete statement or question (also known as the stem) followed by alternatives from which to select (the options).

Certainly, multiple-choice testing is immensely popular in a huge variety of applications in education, psychology, and beyond. Educational psychologists have pioneered in applying multiple-choice testing for research, instruction, assessment/evaluation, prediction/selection/classification/placement, certification/licensure, and for other purposes. Furthermore, educational psychologists have led in conducting research about and development of multiple-choice testing, a short summary of which follows. This entry considers why and how one might use the multiple-choice form, general goals for test developers (including teachers), and more ...

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