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Diagnostic Assessment with Ordered Multiple-Choice Items

Publisher: Educational Assessment, 11 (1)
Page Numbers: 33-46

This article describes the development, analysis, and interpretation of a novel item format we call Ordered Multiple-Choice (OMC). A unique feature of OMC items is that they are linked to a model of student cognitive development for the construct being measured. Each of the possible answer choices in an OMC item is linked to developmental levels of student understanding, facilitating the diagnostic interpretation of student item responses. OMC items seek to provide greater diagnostic utility than typical multiple-choice items, while retaining their efficiency advantages. On the one hand, sets of OMC items provide information about the developmental understanding of students that is not available with traditional multiple-choice items; on the other hand, this information can be provided to schools, teachers, and students quickly and reliably, unlike traditional open-ended test items.…