Education for Health

GENERAL ARTICLE
Year
: 2015  |  Volume : 28  |  Issue : 3  |  Page : 194--200

An Enhancement-focused framework for developing high quality single best answer multiple choice questions


Tahra AlMahmoud1, Margaret Ann Elzubeir2, Sami Shaban4, Frank Branicki3 
1 Department of Surgery, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, United Arab Emirates University, Al Ain, United Arab Emirates
2 Professor, Department of Medical Education, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, United Arab Emirates University, Al Ain, United Arab Emirates
3 Professor, Department of Surgery, College of Medicine and Health Sciences, United Arab Emirates University, Al Ain, United Arab Emirates

Correspondence Address:
Tahra AlMahmoud
College of Medicine and Health Sciences, United Arab Emirates University, P.O. Box: 17666, Al Ain
United Arab Emirates

Background: The primary goal of any assessment of students is to provide valid and reliable evaluations of students' knowledge and skills as well as provision of accurate feedback to students about their performance. Contrary to best practice guidelines for development of multiple choice questions (MCQs), however, items used within medical schools are often flawed. This disappoints students and discourages examiners from using in-house MCQ databases. Vetting and reviewing items can improve the quality of MCQs. In this paper, we describe our approach to standardize the format used for MCQ assessment and provide recommendations for quality enhancement of high-stakes assessment. Methods: A collaborative enhancement-focused vetting and review approach to development of high quality single best answer MCQs has been described. Results: Implementation of a collaborative strategy to blueprint, vet, review and standard set MCQ items for high stakes examinations can effectively contribute to assessment quality assurance. Similarly, shared responsibility for post examination analyses of items may reveal the psychometric properties of items in need of improvement and contribute to closure of the assessment outcomes feedback loop. Discussion: Devolving responsibility for implementation of assessment processes as an integral part of educational practices and values can maximize reliability and standards of assessment processes. We contend that while logistics and time constraints are of concern to busy faculty members, judicious utilization of resources to develop well-written MCQ items are well worth the effort to produce reliable and valid examinee scores. An enhancement-focused approach can be institutionally rewarding and lead to improved quality of high stakes assessments.


How to cite this article:
AlMahmoud T, Elzubeir MA, Shaban S, Branicki F. An Enhancement-focused framework for developing high quality single best answer multiple choice questions.Educ Health 2015;28:194-200


How to cite this URL:
AlMahmoud T, Elzubeir MA, Shaban S, Branicki F. An Enhancement-focused framework for developing high quality single best answer multiple choice questions. Educ Health [serial online] 2015 [cited 2021 Jan 21 ];28:194-200
Available from: https://www.educationforhealth.net/article.asp?issn=1357-6283;year=2015;volume=28;issue=3;spage=194;epage=200;aulast=AlMahmoud;type=0