How to Do Well on Multiple Choice Questions

Four Parts:Getting an overviewEliminating what isn't correctSelecting answersSkipping questions

Anyone who takes a class will face multiple choice questions at some time or other. Use these strategies to do well on multiple choice questions.

Part 1
Getting an overview

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    Look through all of the questions. Answer the easy questions first and skip the more challenging questions for later.
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    Note or circle the most important details. Look for these details in the passage or question before you.

Part 2
Eliminating what isn't correct

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    Read each question carefully. Fill in the choice with your own words. Choose the answer that most closely represents your own words.
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    Make each option pass the "true-false" test. Cross out any options that are not true.
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    Eliminate absolute statements. Options that use the words "always," "none" or "never" are less likely to be true than "usually" or "probably."

Part 3
Selecting answers

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    Choose "all of the above" only if you know that multiple options are correct.
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    Check the stem. If the question ends with "a" or "an," then the first word of the correct answer may match the given article.
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    Select "B" or "C" when in doubt. Instructors often hide the correct answers in the middle of the options[1].

Part 4
Skipping questions

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    Remember to look back to the questions that you skipped. Look at each question individually and eliminate the options that you know are incorrect. Cross the wrong options out with your pencil if possible. If they are still problematic, remember it is better to choose and possibly be right than to leave blank and not have any chance at all.

Tips

  • Study before the test. No amount of guessing will help you if you don't know the material.
  • If you are taking a standardized test as opposed to an instructor-made test, then take practice exams so that you can learn strategy. Purchase a book or find sample tests online.

Warnings

  • Some standardized tests penalize you for guessing, and some don't. Always check to see if you receive a greater penalty for choosing a wrong answer than you will for leaving the question blank.

Article Info

Categories: Tests and Exams