Multiple Choice Test Taking Strategies


Multiple choice tests can be tricky; in order to do well, a student should routinely use a few good strategies. Let’s take a look at four key strategies below.

Annotate the question

Research shows that the more an individual engages with the question, the more focused the brain becomes. Therefore, when reading the question, it’s a good idea to circle or underline the question’s focal point to help the brain zero in on what its being asked to do.

Formulate an answer

After reading the question, formulate an answer in your mind before you read the answer choices. This may help you select the correct answer and eliminate the wrong ones.

Read every answer

This may seem basic, but be sure to read all the answers before selecting your choice. Reviewing each answer reduces the likelihood of selecting the wrong or trick answer.

Know the type of answers

In a multiple choice test with four or five answers, the answer types are typically: correct, close, trick, and wrong. For a question with five answers, two close or trick answers may exist. If you generally can eliminate two, your chances of selecting the correct answer significantly increase. And if you can eliminate the wrong and trick answers, then it will be easier to review the text and differentiate between the close and correct answers.

Want to ace that next multiple choice test? Then be prepared both in the subject matter and test-taking strategies. Many studies support that the more actively engaged a student is with a test, the better his or her score will be. Most importantly, circle important words and cross out incorrect answers; these methods help focus the brain, especially during longer tests.

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