Study on item and test analysis of multiple choice questions amongst undergraduate medical students

Abhijeet S. Ingale, Purushottam A. Giri, Mohan K. Doibale


Background: Item analysis is the process of collecting, summarizing and using information from students’ response to assess the quality of test items. However it is said that MCQs emphasize recall of factual information rather than conceptual understanding and interpretation of concepts. There is more to writing good MCQs than writing good questions. The objectives of the study was to assess the item and test quality of multiple choice questions and to deal with the learning difficulties of students, identify the low achievers in the test.

Methods: The hundred MBBS students from Government medical college were examined. A test comprising of thirty MCQs was administered. All items were analysed for Difficulty Index, Discrimination Index and Distractor Efficiency. Data entered in MS Excel 2007 and SPSS 21 analysed with statistical test of significance.

Results: Majority 80% items difficulty index is within acceptable range. 63% items showed excellent discrimination Index. Distractor efficiency was overall satisfactory.

Conclusions: Multiple choice questions with average difficulty and also having high discriminating power with good distracter efficiency should be incorporated into student’s examination. 


Item, Difficulty index, Discrimination index, Non functional distracters, Distracter efficiency

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