Friday, October 26, 2018

subjective "objective" test questions (and vice versa)

A proposition I thought about this AM: "Objective" test questions (multiple-choice, true/false, fill-in-the-blank, matching) are more subjective than "subjective" test questions (short answer, short essay, long essay). I'm going to develop this thought more fully in a writing project soon, but for now...
-"Objective" questions are more objective in terms of "correct" vs. incorrect answers. (But this is not a 0/1, since questions-- particularly those that are less simplistic and hopefully more valuable-- can have nuance and complexity that leads to better correct answers.) In contrast, teachers use (formal or informal) rubrics to lessen the subjectivity of "subjective" questions.
-"Objective" questions are (far?) less objective in terms of deciding how many questions an A, B, C, D or F student should get correct-- and therefore, the larger issue: the standard by which students should be judged on a test. In contrast, if I have a series of rubrics for each "subjective" question, it's easy to aggregate those to a coherent and relatively objective standard for what constitutes success at a certain grade level.

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