Strategies for Acing a Multiple Choice Test

Multiple choice tests are easy and at the same time are diplomatic in nature. At some point in our life, whether we like it or not, whether we agree with it or not, we have to go for the multiple choice tests. These tests have become the usual way of evaluating candidates. To clear multiple choice tests, one has to be wise and time conscious. We take these tests in every stage of our career like in elementary school, middle school, high school, college and even competitive exams like Bank Exams, UPSC for a secure job.  Since these tests are so common, it’s important to have a few handy strategies when we sit for the exams. A writer William Poundstone claims to have found common and statistical patterns in multiple choice tests across all sources.

Here are some strategies that will help you to tackle a multiple choice test in a smarter way.

  • Manage your time accordingly: Try not to waste too much time for one question. If you get stuck on a particular question, then circle it and move on to the next question. Remember that, time is the most precious thing in a multiple choice test, so try to invest time in the questions you know the answer to. Come back to those circled questions at the end.
  • Make an Educated Guess: Often people get stuck on a question because they are not certain about the answer to that question. In such a situation, you must eliminate as many options as possible and make an educated guess. But don’t consider a random guess to be an educated guess. So, what is an educated guess? In a true or false question set, if you know answers to some of the questions then by educated guessing strategy, you can guess answers to the rest of the questions. For example, There is a set of ten questions. We can solve it hypothetically,

1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10

Step-1: Let’s say you know the answers to the questions 3, 5, 6, 8 and 10.

1  2  T  4  F  T  7  T  9  F

Step-2: Now let’s come to the questions where you are clueless about the answer. First, go for the question whose neighbouring questions have an identical response. Here, question 7 has both its neighboring answers T, so pick F as the answer for 7.

1   2   T   4   F   T   F   T   9   F

Step-3:  Now come to question no 4 and 9. When preceding and succeeding answers are different, then pick T as your response because T is likelier than F. So, we pick T for both 4 and 9.

1   2   T   T   F   T   F   T   T   F

Step-4: You are now left with the first two questions. Here, TF will be the best answer, as it’ll form a non-repeating pattern.

                                                                            T   F   T   T   F   T   F   T   T   F

  • Choose the Longest Answer: According to Poundstone, in multiple choice tests, the longest answers are usually the correct ones. Teachers have to make sure that right answers are indisputably right. They may not try so hard with wrong answers.” If one choice is noticeably longer than its counterparts, he says it’s likely the correct answer.
  • Go through all the Choices: Avoid skipping answer options. In this haphazard process, you might skip the right answer.

These tricks mentioned for solving multiple choice questions will help the candidates in their entrance exams like CAT, NEET, etc. The candidate should use such strategies as a last resort since these competitive exams have negative marking for every wrong answer marked. The aspirants can also.

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 About Author: Arpita Das enjoys inspiring others through her writing and blogging and is presently working as a content writer at Byju’s.Since when she started her career she has written articles and blogs. If you wish to discuss any related concepts or ideas feel free to drop an email at