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UNDERSTANDING THE ANATOMY AND PHILOSOPHY OF MCQS TO OBTAIN BEST RESULTS POSSIBLE

AMIT BALLANI

MCQS AS A TOOL FOR EVALUATION


The

introduction of multiple choice questions (MCQs) as a tool for the evaluation is a relatively new thing.
purpose has been to increase the objectivity in the existing system of evaluation.

The

MCQS AS A TOOL FOR EVALUATION

This has made the students read in-depth the various topics and has prompted the teachers to approach the topics in a holistic manner for framing the questions.
Overall, it has been a brain-stimulating task for both the teachers and the students.

MCQs FACTS-DO YOU KNOW ?


MCQs or multiple choice questions are widely used whether it be in the general education, medical education Post Graduation admission or Amithabh Bachachan's Kaun Banega Crorepati. Why should one go in for MCQs ? Because it is convenient and the fact that it overcomes the inherent defects of the conventional system of evaluation and makes it more objective.

WHAT IS NEEDED ?

A student should have a broad-based knowledge of the concerned subject, which implies an ability to register and recall a large number of facts to answer MCQs effectively. This recall has to be done in a short span of time to enable effective answering of MCQs. This would appear to be a formidable task for the uninitiated. But there are methods of overcoming it.

INFORMATION NETWORKING

What is essentially required is a system of "net-working" within the student's brain. A lot of facts in biology have a tendency to repeat, have a tendency to overlap. One should effectively link this information and use it advantageously.

INFORMATION NETWORKING
There are very many facts like these in CELL BIOLOGY, which when mulled over back and forth can be remembered better by association. If a student develops this ability of linking information and association of thoughts, anatomical facts can be remembered better and used effectively to answer MCQs.

Myth and Fact

To know the particular subject of biology and to be able to answer MCQs correctly are not one and the same. Knowledge can be acquired by reading books but to attempt MCQs correctly, practice and familiarity with the various types of MCQs is a must.

Different types of MCQs.

Some of the commonly used types of MCQs are Single best response, Matching, Multiple true/false independent, Multiple completion and Relationship Analysis type.

1. A Single Best Response Type of MCQ


It consists of a base (stem), followed by a series of alternatives or options, out of which one is the answer (key) and the rest are called distractors. There are mostly four options.
A student should read the directions carefully and follow them accordingly. (S)he should read the four alternatives and select the most appropriate answer.

Select the best or the most appropriate answer.


Q. MOST ABUNDANT PROTEIN IN THE HUMAN BODY IS : A.Hemoglobin B.Keratin C.Collagen D.immunoglobulin

The negative type of SBR with 'not' or 'except' should be dealt with cautiously.
Q. Which of the following is not part of cytoskeleton of eukaryotic cells
A. B. C. D.

Microfilaments Mitochondria Intermediate filaments microtubules

Matching type

Here, each item on the left will match with only one option on the right side; but the vice versa is not true. This is a type of one-to-one or many-to-one correspondence. Directions: For each of the numbered sub question below, select a lettered option that closely matches it. Each lettered option may be used once, more than once or not at all.

Multiple true/false independent type

In each component is either true or false and thus easy to answer. Directions: Answer the following questions by writing T (True) or F (False) for each sub-question.

Example

Q. What is true pertaining Pertaining to liver

A. It is covered by a connective tissue capsule throughout except in bare areas. B. The main bare area of the liver is an important site of porta-systemic anastomosis. C. It develops from foregut. D. Portal lobule is centered on central veins.

Multiple completion type


Directions:
For each of the questions below one or more of the answers given are correct. Choose the correct answer as per the code given below: A. If only 1,2,3 are correct B. If only 1,3 are correct C. If only 2,4 are correct. D. If only 4 is correct E. If all 1,2,3,4 are correct. GENERALLY NOT ASKED IN PG ENTRANCE

Example
Q. Derivatives of foregut include:
1) 2) 3) 4) Liver Pancreas Stomach Spleen

In Relationship analysis type the two statements should be read carefully.

Directions:

Each question given below consists of two statements: Statement 1 (Assertion) and statement 2 (Reason) connected by the term "because". Choose the correct answer using the code given below:-

A. If both statements are true and the statement 2 is a correct explanation of the statement 1. B. If both statements are true but the statement 2 is not a correct explanation of the statement 1. C. If the statement 1 is true and the statement 2 is false. D. If the statement 1 is false and the statement 2 is true. E. If both statements are false.

What materials are required for preparation to answer MCQS

An outline/synopsis to quickly review the whole topic. A good standard textbook for explanation of complex topics.

What should be your attitude?


Keep a positive attitude: Aim to move towards success rather than away from failure. Do not memorize too much information. Remember, MCQs require fine distinctions between correct and nearly correct statements, therefore try to learn and understand less material and rely on applying the knowledge. Relying on memorized material causes anxiety; anxiety causes confusion; confusion decreases performance.

While preparing for the examinations:

Study the entire topic, not merely for the examinations. Some topics may not be asked for the examinations - but might be required for future clinical application. Attempt to understand the application of the knowledge - this allows long-term retention.

Ask yourself how you might construct a question on the topic(s) you are presently studying. Use practice examinations intelligently. Analyze why particular alternatives were incorrect. Also try re-framing the questions in different formats to make the other alternatives as the correct answers. You will be amazed to know how soon you gain a deeper insight to those topics when you go through such exercise.

While preparing for the examinations:

During the examinations:

Use the time optimally. Each MCQ test has a specific number of questions and a specific time period to solve them. If you finish too early, you were going too fast. Read the directions carefully and answer accordingly. The answers are usually checked by a computer - cancellations are not permitted: the computer cannot interpret cancelled and rewritten answers and will treat them as incorrect.

During the examinations:

Read all alternatives carefully and make rough work (if necessary) for eliminating the incorrect answers in the question paper itself.
If there are no negative markings, attempt all the questions.

During the examinations:

Be honest with yourself. If you do not know a particular answer, eliminate as many choices as possible and then choose reasonably. Blindly tossing a coin to answer MCQs should not be the method adopted. Know your subject and get the joy of answering. Do not expect to know everything - you are giving a bachelor's exams and not a master's.

During the examinations:

Keep cool and you will succeed


RECHECK your answers finally so as to avoid frameshifts. Recheck you have filled other necessary information correctly Ask invigilator humbly, in case of any doubt

"Examinations are formidable even to the best prepared, for the greatest fool may ask more than the wisest man can answer"
Charles Caleb Colton.

TIPS TO CRACK MCQs


AMIT BALLANI

A CHALLENGE
Dealing with MULTIPLE CHOICE QUESTIONS is an art and to get a seat in entrance examinations, you have to be a master in it.

According to my personal experiences I am giving you a few tips that may be of help while attempting the Multiple Choice Entrance Exams. These tips apply to all the competitions where there is negative marking (up to 1/3rd or Th)

CERTAIN TIPS TO CRACK EXAMS INVOLVING MCQS

Tip No. 1 Try to attempt max questions.

Tip No. 2 Give max time to the easiest question. If the first option is a correct one, look at the last option to make sure it is not an "all of the above" option. The same is true for the "none of the above"

TIPS TO CRACK EXAMS INVOLVING MCQS

Tip no 3 Read every option, even if you are more than 100% sure about the 1st option.
Tip no 4 Try exclusion mechanism in case of confusion.

TIPS TO CRACK EXAMS INVOLVING MCQS

Tip no 5 if you Know nothing about the question or the options leave the question
Tip no 6 Can rule out 1 option, try to attempt it. Tip no 7 Always try to imagine the topic (in your notes or book) .After reading the question cover the answers with your hand and now try to answer it .when you come with some look for it in the given options.

TIPS TO CRACK EXAMS INVOLVING MCQS

Tip no 8 Always use true or false method in case of negatively worded question (as in "which of the following are NOT . . .), or the questions havingall except put a T or F beside each option, then simply select the odd statement.

Tip no 9 Before marking the option ask yourself reason to mark it right or does it make any sense or not Tip no 10 If while dealing with the question, your logic says something and your knowledge says something else, in this confusion always follow your knowledge.

TIPS TO CRACK EXAMS INVOLVING MCQS

Tip no 11 When guessing, do not change answers. ** Research indicates your first answer is usually the correct one . However, don't be afraid to change answers when you have a good reason for doing so.

Tip no 11 Allow time at the end to check for carelessness and Silly mistakes

TAKE CHARGE OF YOURSELF


Stand

up, be bold, take the responsibility on your shoulders and rest not till the goal is reached. -SWAMI VIVEKANAND