Essay on The Sample Cpa Exam Question

770 Words Dec 14th, 2016 4 Pages
As written, the question requires no accounting knowledge whatsoever since it asks for a policy, and only one of the four answer choices (a.) is, in fact, a policy. The three distracters are merely statements of fact. The correct answer becomes obvious based on a flaw in the incorrect answer choices.

The sample CPA exam question in Figure 2 exemplifies the importance of including quality distracters in MC questions. MC questions that guide students to correct or incorrect answers or that lack thoughtful incorrect answer choices are ineffective in evaluating student learning.
The challenge is to develop a rigorous MC question where the one correct answer requires insightful knowledge and where incorrect options are viable alternatives in terms of how students might reason incorrectly (Clegg & Cashin, 1986). This statement focuses on a more subtle element of well written distractors – their ability to capture how students are thinking when they are reasoning incorrectly. This is particularly relevant for quantitative MC questions in accounting.

Despite some perceived drawbacks, MC type questions are prevalent on exams both in college courses and for professional certification. Therefore, a considerable amount of cross-disciplinary research has been conducted to test whether MC items assess the same level of students’ understanding as constructed response questions (Becker & Johnston, 1999; Bible, Simkin, & Kuechler, 2008; Kuechler & Simkin, 2003; Simkin & Kuechler,…

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