MCQs are a great way to conduct tests online and offline. Creating a multiple choice test paper is now simple and fast. Let’s discuss the different ways to prepare the test paper online and understand the steps to follow in each method.
Multiple Choice Questions are a favorite of many. With one correct answer from three or four options, everyone has their own way of solving the question. MCQs are a standard format for many competitive examinations. All the popular tests have MCQs of varying difficulty levels and complexities.
MCQs are used in quizzes, too, and encourage higher student participation. But preparing a multiple choice test paper can be time-consuming for teachers. The teacher has to pick a topic to phrase the question and provide four options for each question. Wouldn’t it be nice for teachers can save time and energy when creating MCQ tests and quizzes?
Luckily, there are ways to do so. Yes, we are talking about technology. Be it Google Forms or an online question generator tool like PrepAI, drafting a test paper with MCQs is no longer a strenuous task. Let’s look at the ways to use online platforms and Google Forms to create an MCQ test in just a few minutes. But before that, we’ll read a few important pointers about how to create a multiple-choice question.
How to Create Multiple Choice Test?
Teachers are aware that luck plays a factor in this question format and has enough weight to determine the final result. The answers selected by students during the test may be guesswork as well.
So how can teachers minimize the influence of luck and ensure that their MCQ test paper will reflect the actual knowledge of the students? Also, teachers have to prepare a test paper that doesn’t put any student at a disadvantage. Consider the following aspects when creating an MCQ test.
Use Familiar Terms
Use the same terminology used when teaching the subject. Familiar terms trigger memory and help students remember what they’ve read/ learned in the class.
No Negative Phrasing
Using double negatives in a sentence will confuse the students. Unless it’s an English or grammar test where it is necessary to use negative phrasing, don’t do it. Write the question in simple and easy terms that can be understood without much effort.
No Keywords in the Question
The questions shouldn’t be too easy either. The answer should not be a part of the question. Take out any keywords and rephrase the question.
Don’t Write Long Questions
Long questions are not usually necessary in multiple-choice tests. Keep the question to the point and let it be brief. Long questions with multiple sentences can confuse the students and make them wonder what they should do with the answer.
Only One Correct Answer
Some questions can have more than one correct answer, and that can be annoying when students want marks for both answers. Either remove one option or rephrase the question. Furthermore, ask the students to choose the best answer instead of the correct answer.
Be Grammatically Correct
Grammar is important when creating a question paper. Don’t let a grammatical error become a loophole or a deciding factor when assessing the answers.
Don’t make sweeping or general statements through questions. Avoid words like never, always, all, and none. Also, take care not to have questions with ‘all of the above or ‘none of the above’ as answers for too many questions. Include variety and keep the question paper interesting.
Avoid Patterns in Answers
This can be tricky when you have to prepare a test paper with thirty, fifty, or a hundred questions. But students are quick to see patterns in the answers and use them to their advantage. For example, if C’s seem to be a recurring correct answer or if the answer for every fifth question is B, it won’t be long before students start relying on the patterns to answer the test instead of determining the right choice by reading and understanding the question.
How to Create Multiple-Choice Questions Online
There are many ways to create MCQs online. The process will be slightly different depending on the platform you use, but the basic steps remain more or less the same. For our convenience, we’ll use PrepAI to explain how to create multiple-choice tests online.
PrepAI is an NLP-based question-generation platform that automates the creation of a test paper. Enter input data, select the type of questions, and save the test paper (output). Sounds simple, isn’t it?
Let’s go through the steps to create an MCQ test using PrepAI. Teachers can generate surprise tests and quizzes without feeling stressed. Statistics show that using PrepAI saves time by around 12x times. The tool also allows teachers to cross-check the correct answers and edit the questions before saving the final copy.
Input the Data
The first step after logging into your PrepAI account is to enter the input data to automate question generation. The platform accepts input data in the following formats:
Topic Search: Yes, that’s it. You provide the question paper creation platform with the topic, and it’ll do the rest.
Text Input: Enter the text from which you want to create the questions. Type it in the text box or copy and paste it from elsewhere.
Video or URL: What if the content is in visual format? Simply post the URL of the video or upload the video directly. PrepAI can convert data from videos to text.
Docx or PDF File: If you already have the content in an MS Word file or a PDF, upload it to the platform from the device, drive or cloud.
Choose the Question Format
Online question generator platforms usually offer more than one type of question. For example, you can create MCQs, fill-ups, true or false, and descriptive questions using PrepAI. Since we want multiple-choice questions, we select this option and go to the next step.
Determine the Difficulty Level
Now, it’s time to choose the difficulty level of the test. Determine this based on why you are conducting the test. For example, surprise tests don’t have to be hard. A monthly or quarterly assessment has to be tough to determine how much the students learned during the last few weeks. Choose between three difficulty levels, easy, medium, and hard.
Edit the Questions
The question generator software will create the MCQs and list them on the screen. It’s time to go through the questions and edit them to meet your requirements. Whether you want to rephrase a question or change the answer, do it at this stage.
Add More Questions
Teachers can also add more questions from their side. If a particular question is not automatically listed by the platform, you can include it yourself. Similarly, deselect the questions you feel are not important.
Preview the MCQ Test Paper
PrepAI lets you rate the questions and answers before previewing the final test paper. This provides feedback to the algorithm and fine-tunes it to suit your requirements. Since teachers can use the platform any number of times, the rating will ‘teach’ it about the types of questions you prefer. This will result in fewer edits and additions over time. Preview the MCQs test paper one last time to remove errors.
Save and Download the Final Test Copy
Save a copy of the test paper for future reference and download it in a format of your choice. PrepAI provides test paper exports in Doc and PDF formats.
Print the test papers or mail a copy to the students attending the exam.
How to Create Multiple-Choice Questions In Google Forms
Another tool many teachers use to prepare MCQ test papers is Google Forms. Anyone who has a Google account can create the test by accessing Google Forms through their profile. Let’s go through the steps about how to create an MCQ test in Google Forms.
Start New Form
There are a couple of ways to start a new form on Google. If you are logged into your Gmail account, click on the nine dots (Google apps) and click on Forms in the list. Or, directly enter the URL forms.google.com. Then, click on the big plus sign that indicates starting a new blank form.
Make a Quiz
A Google Form can be of many types, so you need to change the generic form to a multiple-choice one. Go to the Settings tab and slide the toggle facing ‘Make this a quiz’. This will replace the generic layout of the form with MCQs.
On the same Settings page, you need to enable the form to collect email addresses from each student who answers the test. You also need to change the settings to allow only one response per question. It wouldn’t do if students select all options for all questions.
Next, enable or disable auto-grading. This determines if the students can immediately see the results or if they have to wait for you to share the results with them. Also, go through the remaining settings and enable or disable them based on your requirements.
Go back to the Questions tab and update the form name and descriptions. Add questions by clicking on the ⊕ sign on the side menu. The dropdown provides different types of questions to choose from. You can include short answers, paragraph answers, MCQs, checkboxes, etc.
At this stage, you can either use the students’ email addresses to verify their IDs or create a short answer as the first question to enter their full names. Then proceed to add the MCQs for the test.
For multiple-choice questions, you also need to enter the options from your side. Click on option 1, provide the answer, and hit enter. You can also include images as options by clicking on the image logo on the side and uploading a picture from the device/ drive or the internet. Do the same for every question.
Shuffle Option Order
Shuffle Option Order is another feature that allows teachers to mix up the order of MCQs to prevent cheating. You can also do this manually, though using the feature saves time and energy.
Once the MCQ test paper is complete, teachers need to prepare the answer key. Click on the Answer Key link at the bottom of the form. Set the right answer for each question and assign a point value for grading. The grading can be uniform or based on the difficulty level of each question. There’s also an option to add answer feedback for each question.
Open the Responses tab to see the answers from students. You can assess the results in three ways: each student’s answer for each question, individual student’s answers for all questions, and a summary of the entire test.
Share a link to the Google Forms with students to attend the test. While Google Forms is convenient, it doesn’t allow you to automate question generation. That’s where AI-based platform like PrepAI comes in handy.
With artificial intelligence and new technology entering the education industry, teachers have more control over how to create tests, assess students, and streamline learning to create a better future for students.