Closed-question and open-problem assessment in undergraduate electronic engineering courses - a case study

Marek Nałęcz


The paper describes the assessment of student learning for courses in the principles of circuit theory held at the Faculty of Electronics and Information Technology of the Warsaw University of Technology. The results presented here are based on about 2400 two-part exam papers scored, with >1000 multiple-choice test questions and >140 open-problem exercises. The multiple-choice part of the exam is computer assisted for both preparation and scoring. The questions form a YAML database, the content of which is written using LaTeX to easily incorporate mathematical formulas and graphics both in the questions and the answers. A computer program written in Ruby creates a PDF file containing exam sheets, which are randomized with respect to the order of questions and answers, and as to the answers themselves. After the exam, the students’ answers are manually supplied to another Ruby program, which computes the scores and uploads them to the faculty server. Due to this automation, the process of data entry and checking takes only about 1 minute per student. Despite this advantage, our experience shows that the multiple-choice part of the exam could not substitute for the open-problem part, as the correlation coefficient between the corresponding scores equals 0.3, even after removing items characterized by the difficulty coefficient <0.1 or >0.9, as well as those that have an item-test correlation coefficient <0.2.
Author Marek Nałęcz ISE
Marek Nałęcz,,
- The Institute of Electronic Systems
Publication size in sheets406.65
Book Gómez Chova L., López Martínez A., Candel Torres I. (eds.): ICERI2016 Proceedings 9th International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation , 2016, IATED Academy, ISBN 978-84-617-5895-1, [2340-1095 ], 8883 p., DOI:10.21125/iceri.2016
Keywords in EnglishElectronic engineering education, educational technology, closed-question vs. open-problem assessment, classical test theory
projectResearch on measurement, circuit and signal theory and electronic circuits and systems. Project leader: Starecki Tomasz, , Phone: +48 22 825 37 09; 22 234 7744; +48 22 234 3657, start date 12-05-2016, end date 31-12-2017, ISE/2016/DS, Completed
WEiTI Działalność statutowa
Languageen angielski
Score (nominal)15
ScoreMinisterial score = 15.0, 27-03-2017, BookChapterMatConf
Ministerial score (2013-2016) = 15.0, 27-03-2017, BookChapterMatConf
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