Types of Examinations

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Written By Charlotte Miller

Examinations are every student’s biggest nightmare, but they also know that performing well in exams and scoring well is crucial for their further studies and career. Exams are the best tools for teachers too, as, through exams, they evaluate students’ knowledge and understanding. These were the main purposes of the examination but they are not the only purposes. Exams don’t only test students but also teach them. Exams make students responsible for their studies, encourage self-study and writing exams help in enhancing students’ critical thinking, reasoning and aptitude skills. Teachers prepare students for different types of examinations by taking mock tests or by giving them model-test papers and previous years’ question papers of all subjects like English or by giving tricky maths puzzles with answers for practice. 

There are different types of exams that are conducted, fulfilling their purpose. Students need to give exams whether in school, college or from their home or other centers. The article discusses the different types of exams. Keep reading the article to know about them.

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Multiple-Choice Exams: In these types of exams the question paper constructed consists of questions with multiple answer choices and students need to choose the most suitable option. The questions given in these exams usually are of the same value, this is an objective type exam in which questions asked are straight to the point and students need to answer the questions based on their learned concepts and understanding. The choices given in these exams help the students recall their concepts and test their memory-retention of their gained knowledge. The multiple-choice format is used in various exams as it is used in school and college exams, and competitive and entrance exams too.

Essay Type Examinations: The essay type examinations are used to evaluate the real and thorough understanding of the concepts and topics by the students. In these types of examinations, students are needed to explain their answers in a detailed manner. That’s why it is called essay exams because students need to write and describe their answers in a few paragraphs or sometimes in a few pages too. The length of answers in such types of examinations depends on the question asked or on the word limit given in the question paper. Essay examinations are an age-old format of examinations, they do take time to write but they also provide deep insight into the students’ understanding and teachers get to know their true knowledge level. Students need to formulate the answer they are going to write in their minds before writing them on paper, as the answers are written in such exams needed to be in a proper structure so that it explains everything asked in the question.  Thus enhancing the writing, presentation and organisation skills of the students.

This format of the examination is also used in various education levels like in schools but especially in college and university exams where students are required to write a thesis, research papers or observation papers.

Oral Exams:  Oral exams or often called vivas are the types of exams where students are mandated to present and explain the asked questions orally in front of the examiner. Such types of exams are used to check and enhance the oral communication skills and presentation skills of the students. In oral exams students need to be attentive while the question is being asked, they need to listen and comprehend the question then recall their learned knowledge, formulate the answer in their mind and present it orally to the examiner. This exam format is used in practicals or courses like online MBA and Hotel management courses; students need to acquire communication, listening, and presentation skills.

Open-Book Examinations:  Open book examinations are similar to essay type but they also have variations as some teachers add multiple-choice or short answer type questions in it. As its name suggests, in open book exams students need to answer the questions in written format but they are allowed to bring books with them on their exam. During the pandemic when teachers were to teach online and education was shifted online, many colleges and universities conducted online open-book examinations, allowing students to use offline & online resources. 

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