Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Essay Tests vs. Multiple Choice Tests

Personally, I feel that essays tests and multiple choice tests are both great forms of assessments. Essay tests allow students to write down everything they know in essay format. This allows the teacher to see if the students are able to answer the question in a clear and concise way. Mulitple choice tests are give students options instead of having them think of an answer on their own. Multiple choice tests give students option so that they can use process of elimination in order to get the correct answer. The choices should not be too easy though. There should be some distractors that seem to be the correct answers to throw off the students.
In my future classroom I would use both essay tests and multiple choice tests. I would probably use essay tests more though. I feel that essay tests are an easier way to assess a student's work. For example, if a student chooses the wrong answer on a multiple choice test, it is completely wrong and the student gets no credit for his/her work. If the student writes an essay and can back up his/her answer with examples, the student will receive partial credit.


  1. Alyssa,

    Great thoughts...

    You claimed, "In my future classroom I would use both essay tests and multiple choice tests."

    Using multiple forms of assessment is the best way to assess students.

    Thanks for posting!

  2. Although I agree and will use both methods in my future class room, I will use multiple choice more frequently. If you give a muli choice test the if the student is unsure of the correct answer he/ she is more likely to do process of elimination and arrive at a correct answer whereas with an essay test if the student doesn't know the answer they will simply leave the question unanswered and receive no credit.