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Autor:  m rob
E-mail:  não-disponível
Data:  04/JUL/2007 11:03 PM
Assunto:  Quiz for int levels - suggestions

Suggestions –

One of the difficulties is setting examinations is that there is a very onerous burden upon the examiner to set unambiguous, clear and error free questions. 


Without wishing to be pedantic or to create offence, I wish to highlight a number of sections of your test which fall below the requisite standard in a number of instances.


· Dear Flo,
Guess what? I (get)  a new computer yesterday! My old one (be)  just too slow and out-of-date. This new one (be)  fast and easy to use. I (love)  it! I (write)  to you on it right now. At the same time, I (listen)  to some great music on the Internet. What a great machine!


Essentially this is fine – there is only one correct answer to: (get); (be – second sentence);  (love); (write).


However two of the examples could have two possible correct answers: (be – first sentence – could be “was” or “had been”);  (listen) could “am listening” or “have been listening”.


Also in the sentence: This new one (be)  fast and easy to use – it would be strictly correct to say “faster and easier” since there is comparison involved.


· Both popcorn and pretzels are salty. But only popcorn is this. What is it?


The use of “is this” is rather unnatural language: (but only popcorn has x feature); furthermore there is a wide range of possible answers – made of corn, is popcorn, is heated, is sold in cinemas, does not appear in a Steeley Dan album title, is not employed in poetic metaphors etc etc


What are you going to accept as the correct answer, given that the range is so broad and apparently random/unlimited.  Will students results be equitable in this circumstance?


· In the questions asking for a choice between Comparative and superlative all of the examples containing the word “the”  are a give away.  If it’s a “the” it can only be superlative – therefore not a very effective test of the material.


The criminal ________. (should be a criminal)
 a. breaks the law 
 b. solves a crime 
 c. has an alibi 
 d. questions 


Although a. is the intended ‘correct answer’, a criminal may also c. have an alibi (they have been identified as a criminal from previous offences but in this instance are innocent.) Alternative d. is not grammatical (“asks questions”; “question the priorities of a society where the poor are disadvantaged and end up in jail.”


You need to tighten up this question.


· The detective looks for ________. (should be a detective)
  a. crime 
 b. weird  (not grammatically correct)
 c. evidence 
 d. hoax  (not grammatically correct – hoaxes or a hoax)


There is also not a clear demarcation whereby one alternative is absolutely correct, whereas others are completely wrong.
· This person ________. (What person?)
 a. questions a criminal 
 b. commits a crime 
 c. makes a confession 
 d. solves a crime 

Any answer could be correct depending upon who the unidentified person is.


· The officer ________. (should be an officer)
 a. has an alibi 
 b. gives testimony 
 c. questions a criminal 
 d. arrests a criminal

Any answer could be correct depending upon the circumstances.


How are you going to allocate fair marks where your questions do not have answers which are clearly right or wrong?


· Urban legend
Urban legends are stories that may or may not be true. Here's a famous (well known ??) urban legend about two college students. They skipped their big calculus test. They then (later ??) told their professor they missed the test because they had a flat tire on the way to school. The professor didn't question the students' story. He put them in different rooms and gave them each a two-page test. Page 1 of the test was easy. Both students smiled. Their "flat tire" hoax was working (had worked – not was working)!

Page 2 was worth 90 out of a total of 100 points (or, was worth 90% of the total mark). The XX page had only one question (on it): Which tire was it?
The students lied about their flat tire.

  Either could be right – maybe they usually catch public transport; there could have been a flat tire without there being any causal relationship between the state of the tire and their failure to attend.  All we can be sure of is that they didn’t attend the test and relied upon the flat tire (which may or may not have been true) as an explanation
The professor was not suspicious of the students' story.
Neither alternative can be selected with absolute certainty.  In any case it is absurd that a calculus exam contains a question of the sort on page 2.  Where I live, universities has formal structures whereby students can apply for special consideration in the case of misadventure affecting performance/ attendance. 


The question does not test a student's analytical skills.
The students probably did not get away with their hoax.


Neither alternative can be selected with absolute certainty.  What is the value of testing guesswork – what capacity or skill of the student is being tested?

________ drivers wear their seat belts.
 a. All 
 b. Most 
 c. None (grammatically incorrect: “No”)


Neither alternative is absolutely correct – what is being tested?; how can marks be equitably determined?

________ of the cars sold today are solar powered.
 a. All 
 b. Most 
 c. None


Neither alternative is absolutely correct – what is being tested?; how can marks be equitably determined?

· 8.
 Yusef thinks text messages are better than phone calls because you can _____  to answer them.

· 9.
 Morgan loves hybrid cars because they are so  _____  at low speeds.

· 10.
 Rupert thinks art museums are becoming too _____.

by using underlined spaces the purpose of the question is made clear.

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Índice de mensagens

 English Made in Brazil -- English, Portuguese, & contrastive linguistics
Quiz for int levels - contribuition  –  Donald  04/JUL/2007, 8:51 PM
 Quiz for int levels - suggestions  –   m rob  04/JUL/2007, 11:03 PM
Quiz for int levels - suggestions  –  Donald  04/JUL/2007, 11:53 PM

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