n Acta Academica - Using multiple-choice questions, short questions and exercises to assess student performance

Volume 38, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 0587-2405


Multiple-choice questions, short questions and exercises were used to assess the performance of students in environmental and water sciences at the University of the Western Cape (Bellville, South Africa). The objectives were to evaluate and compare these three assessment methods, and to indicate which were particularly appropriate for the various modules and academic years. Altogether 136 test and examination papers were marked. Students generally performed better in multiple-choice questions compared to short questions, while their performance on short exercises was the poorest. No significant difference in performance was found between the academic years. Multiple-choice questions are suitable for large classes, but short questions and exercises are recommended as they facilitate the assessment of conceptual knowledge and practical problem-solving skills.

Meerkeusevrae, kortvrae en kortoefeninge is gebruik om die prestasie van studente in omgewings- en waterwetenskappe aan die Universiteit van die Wes-Kaap te evalueer. Die drie evalueringsmetodes is vergelyk om te bepaal watter evalueringsmetode geskik is vir die verskillende modules en akademiese jaarvlakke. 'n Totaal van 136 toets- en eksamenvraestelle is nagesien. Studente het beter gevaar met die meerkeusevrae as met die kortvrae, terwyl die kortoefeninge die swakste was. Daar was geen betekenisvolle verskille in die uitslag oor die akademiese jaargroepe nie. Meerkeusevrae is meer geskik vir groter klasse, maar kortvrae en kortoefeninge vergemaklik die evaluering van konseptuele kennis en praktiese vaardighede.

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