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Matching questions

Matching items require students to match a series of stems or premises to a response or principle. They consist of a set of directions, a column of statements and a column of responses.

Matching questions are really a variation of the multiple choice format. If you find that you are writing MCQs which share the same answer choices, you may consider grouping the questions into a matching item. Tips for writing good matching questions include:

  • Provide clear directions
  • Keep the information in each column as homogeneous as possible
  • Allow the responses to be used more than once
  • Arrange the list of responses systematically if possible (chronological, alphabetical, numerical)
  • Include more responses than stems to help prevent students using a process of elimination to answer question.