An Inquiry into the Effectiveness of Student Generated MCQs as a Method of Assessment to Improve Teaching and Learning


In anticipation of helping students mature from passive to more active learners while engaging with the issues and concepts surrounding computer security, a student generated Multiple Choice Question (MCQ) learning strategy was designed and deployed as a replacement for an assessment task that was previously based on students providing solutions to a series of short-answer questions. To determine whether there was any educational value in students generating their own MCQs students were required to design MCQs. Prior to undertaking this assessment activity each participant completed a pre-test which consisted of 45 MCQs based on the topics of the assessment. Following the assessment activity the participants completed a post-test which consisted of the same MCQs as the pre-test. The pre and post test results as well as the post test and assessment activity results were tested for statistical significance. The results indicated that having students generate their own MCQs as a method of assessment did not have a negative effect on the learning experience. By providing a framework to the students based on the literature to support their engagement with the learning material, we believe the creation of well-structured MCQs resulted in a more advanced understanding of the relationships between the concepts of the learning material as compared with plainly answering a series of short-answer questions from a textbook. Further study is required to determine to what degree this learning strategy encouraged a deeper approach to learning.

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Hutchinson, D. & Wells, J. (2013). An Inquiry into the Effectiveness of Student Generated MCQs as a Method of Assessment to Improve Teaching and Learning. Creative Education, 4, 117-125. doi: 10.4236/ce.2013.47A2014.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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