Using online multiple choice questions with multiple attempts: A case for self-directed learning among tertiary students

Wen Lee Ng, Wan Noor Farah Wan Shamsuddin, Chia Wei Lim, Muhammad Nur Adilin Mohd Anuardi, Swee Heng Chan, Ain Nadzimah Abdullah

Abstract


Criticisms on multiple choice questions (MCQs) include the possibility of students answering MCQs correctly by guessing, and MCQs generally are said to fall short in cultivating independent learning skills, such as taking charge of their learning goals. Countering these common concerns, this research used online MCQ exercises with multiple attempts to investigate the experiences that drove students to become self-directed learners. In this research, 60 students completed two sets of online MCQ exercises with multiple attempts outside of classroom time for six weeks consecutively. Both focus group interviews and an online survey were conducted to investigate the experiences of using online MCQ exercise with multiple attempts in relation to the development of self-directed learning (SDL). The findings of the study showed that the criticisms may be unfounded. Data leads to the conclusion that the majority of the students do not just try to guess at the correct answers. Rather, many of them attempted the online MCQ exercises more than once to improve themselves indicating that they were interested in self learning. Students also reported that they utilised search and inquiry skills that clearly showed motivated initiatives to plan how to overcome their weaknesses by independently looking for relevant resources, determine their own learning goals, and evaluate their own learning performance as a firm indicator of SDL development. Based on the findings, this study is able to refute the claim that MCQs are unable to cultivate independent learning skills. 

Keywords


Online learning for learning English; multiple choice questions; multiple attempts; self-directed learning

References


C. Romero, M. I. López, J. M. Luna, and S. Ventura, “Predicting students’ final performance from participation in on-line discussion forums,” Comput. Educ., vol. 68, pp. 458–472, 2013.

K. Mershad and P. Wakim, “A learning management system enhanced with internet of things applications,” J. Educ. Learn., vol. 7, no. 3, pp. 23–40, 2018.

S. Iqbal and I. A. Qureshi, “Learning management system (LMS): Inside matters,” Inf. Manag. Bus. Rev., vol. 3, no. 4, pp. 206–216, 2011.

D. Bauer, M. Holzer, V. Kopp, and M. R. Fischer, “Pick-N multiple choice-exams: A comparison of scoring algorithms,” Adv. Heal. Sci. Educ., vol. 16, no. 2, pp. 211–221, 2011.

R. M. S. H. B. Medawela, D. R. D. L. Ratnayake, W. A. M. U. L. Abeyasinghe, R. D. Jayasinghe, and K. N. Marambe, “Effectiveness of ‘fill in the blanks’ over multiple choice questions in assessing final year dental undergraduates,” Educ. Medica, vol. 19, no. 2, pp. 72–76, 2018.

R. Ranganath, C. Rajalaksmi, and M. A. Simon, “Medical students’ perceptions of E-assessment: Multiple choice questions used as a tool of assessment for preclinical years,” J. Med. Educ., vol. 16, no. 1, pp. 35–43, 2017.

A. A. Vanderbilt, M. Feldman, and I. K. Wood, “Assessment in undergraduate medical education: A review of course exams,” Med. Educ. Online, vol. 18, no. 1, pp. 1–5, 2013.

A. A. Abbas, “An automatic system to grade multiple choice questions paper based exams,” J. Univ. Anbar Pure Sci., vol. 3, no. 1, pp. 174–181, 2009.

D. Nicol, “E-assessment by design: using multiple-choice tests to good effect,” J. Furth. High. Educ., vol. 31, no. 1, pp. 53–64, 2007.

C. G. Dascalu, A. M. Enache, R. B. Mavru, and G. Zegan, “Computer-based MCQ assessment for students in dental medicine – advantages and drawbacks,” Procedia - Soc. Behav. Sci., vol. 187, pp. 22–27, 2015.

L. W. T. Schuwirth and C. P. M. van der Vleuten, “ABC of learning and teaching in medicine: Written assessment,” Br. Med. J., vol. 326, pp. 643–645, 2003.

L. W. Anderson et al., Eds., A taxonomy for learning, teaching, and assessing: A revision of Bloom’s taxanomy of educational objectives, Abridged E. New York: Longman, 2001.

B. S. Bloom, M. D. Engelhart, E. J. Furst, W. H. Hill, and D. R. Krathwohl, Taxonomy of educational objectives: The classification of educational goals. Handbook I: Cognitive domain. London: Longmans, Green and Co Ltd, 1956.

M. Douglas, J. Wilson, and S. Ennis, “Multiple-choice question tests: A convenient, flexible and effective learning tool? A case study,” Innov. Educ. Teach. Int., vol. 49, no. 2, pp. 111–121, 2012.

M. G. Simkin and W. L. Kuechler, “Multiple-choice tests and student understanding: What is the connection?,” Decis. Sci. J. Innov. Educ., vol. 3, no. 1, pp. 73–97, 2005.

S. Buckles and J. J. Siegfried, “Using multiple-choice questions to evaluate in-depth learning of economics,” J. Econ. Educ., vol. 37, no. 1, pp. 48–57, 2006.

J. C. Masters, B. S. Hulsmeyer, M. E. Pike, K. Leichty, M. T. Miller, and A. L. Verst, “Assessment of multiple-choice questions in selected test banks accompanying text books used in nursing education,” J. Nurs. Educ., vol. 40, no. 1, pp. 25–32, Jan. 2001.

P. McKenna, “Multiple choice questions: Answering correctly and knowing the answer,” Interact. Technol. Smart Educ., vol. 16, no. 1, pp. 59–73, 2019.

K. Scouller, “The influence of assessment method on students’ learning approaches: Multiple choice question examination versus assignment essay,” High. Educ., vol. 35, pp. 453–472, 1998.

K. A. Cobb, G. Brown, D. A. D. C. Jaarsma, and R. A. Hammond, “The educational impact of assessment: A comparison of DOPS and MCQs,” Med. Teach., vol. 35, no. 11, pp. e1598–e1607, 2013.

J. Dalziel and S. Gazzard, “The future of multiple choice questions in learning: Formative assessment, interactive teaching modules and student-created questions within WebMCQ,” in Proceeding of Tools for Flexible Learning Workshop, 1999, pp. 20–22.

N. Collis and J. Bourguignon, “Students’ perceptions of online MCQs: Gathering evidence and learning to swim with it,” in ALT Annual Conference, 2014.

M. S. Knowles, Self-directed learning: A guide for learners and teachers. Englewood Cliffs: Cambridge Adult Education, 1975.

R. G. Brockett and R. Hiemstra, “Bridging the theory–practice gap in self-directed learning,” New Dir. Adult Contin. Educ., no. 25, pp. 31–40, 1985.

R. G. Brockett and R. Hiemstra, Self-direction in adult learning: Perspectives on theory, research, and practice. London and New York: Routledge, 1991.

D. R. Garrison, “Self-directed learning: Toward a comprehensive model,” Adult Educ. Q., vol. 48, no. 1, pp. 18–33, 1997.

R. Hiemstra and R. G. Brockett, “Reframing the meaning of self-directed learning: An Updated Modeltt,” in Adult Education Research Conference Proceedings, 2012, pp. 155–161.

D. Nicol and D. MacFarlane-Dick, “Formative assessment and self-regulated learning: A model and seven principles of good feedback practice,” Stud. High. Educ., vol. 31, no. 2, pp. 199–218, 2006.

S. G. Paris and J. C. Turner, “Situated motivation,” in Student motivation, cognition, and learning: Essays in honor of Wilbert J. McKeachie, P. R. Pintrich, D. R. Brown, and C. E. Weinstein, Eds. Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc., 1994, pp. 213–237.

P. H. Abreu, D. C. Silva, and A. Gomes, “Multiple-choice questions in programming courses: Can we use them and are students motivated by them?,” ACM Trans. Comput. Educ., vol. 19, no. 14, pp. 6:1-6:16, 2018.

Ministry of Education Malaysia, “Malaysia education blueprint 2015-2025 (higher education),” 2015.

A. B. Razali, L. Ying Xuan, and A. A. Samad, “Self-directed learning readiness (SDLR) among foundation students from high and low proficiency levels to learn English language,” Malaysian J. Learn. Instr., vol. 15, no. 2, pp. 55–81, 2018.

J. W. Creswell and V. L. Plano Clark, “Choosing a mixed methods design,” in Designing and Conducting Mixed Methods Research, 2nd ed., Thousand Oaks, California: Sage Publications, Inc., 2011, pp. 53–106.

R. A. Krueger and M. A. Casey, Focus groups: A practical guide for applied research, 5th ed. London: Sage Publications, Inc., 2015.

D. L. Morgan, “Deciding on the number of groups,” in Focus Group kit 2: Planning Focus Groups, Thousand Oaks, California: SAGE Publications, Inc., 1998, pp. 77–84.

M. M. Hennink, B. N. Kaiser, and M. B. Weber, “What influences saturation? Estimating sample sizes in focus group research,” Qual. Health Res., vol. 29, no. 10, pp. 1483–1496, 2019.

D. L. Morgan, “Deciding on group size,” in Focus Group kit 2: Planning Focus Groups, Thousand Oaks, California: SAGE Publications, Inc., 1998, pp. 71–76.

S. L. Stockdale, “Development of an instrument to measure self-directedness,” University of Tennesse, 2003.

W. Q. Shen, H. L. Chen, and Y. Hu, “The validity and reliability of the self-directed learning instrument (SDLI) in mainland Chinese nursing students,” BMC Med. Educ., vol. 14, no. 1, pp. 1–7, 2014.

J. R. Fraenkel, N. E. Wallen, and H. H. Hyun, How to design and evaluate research in education, 8th editio. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2012.

S. Geng, K. M. Y. Law, and B. Niu, “Investigating self-directed learning and technology readiness in blending learning environment,” Int. J. Educ. Technol. High. Educ., vol. 16, no. 17, pp. 1–22, 2019.

M. Honey and D. Marshall, “The impact of on-line muti-choice questions on undergraduate student nurses’ learning,” in Proceedings of the 20th Annual Conference of the Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education (ASCILITE), 2003, pp. 236–243.




DOI: http://doi.org/10.11591/ijere.v10i2.21008
Total views : 25 times

Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.


Copyright (c) 2021 Institute of Advanced Engineering and Science

International Journal of Evaluation and Research in Education (IJERE)
p-ISSN: 2252-8822, e-ISSN: 2620-5440

View IJERE Stats

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.