Success on NCLEX-RN and Multiple Response Questions

Jan 25, 2018 | Customer Solutions

“I just wanted to let you know that I took the NCLEX on January 12th and passed in 75 questions. [..] I found Exam Master especially helpful due to the many select-all-that-apply questions it offered. I also enjoyed taking the 265-question test you created on Exam Master the day before I took the NCLEX!  I was 100% prepared for the NCLEX after using these three resources.”

Happy RN Nursing Graduate
East Carolina University College of Nursing

Well, we certainly like positive feedback from our many users, and we are always happy to share that feedback.  In this case, our happy nursing graduate makes a particular point of mentioning that she was helped in her success by the select-all-that-apply questions found in our NCLEX-RN test bank and practice board exam.  Of course, Multiple Response questions, as these are called, are just one of the item types found on the actual NCLEX exam, and in addition to multiple choice, constructed response, etc.

Our experience, and the opinion of the educators we work with is that students need practice with these alternate item types, even when they may know the material very well.  It is something about the way the brain reviews and processes information presented in new ways that can really throw students a curve if they don’t have prior practice or experience.  Our NCLEX resources, both our simulated board exams as well as the full question bank, contain dozens of carefully constructed multiple response test items just like the real NCLEX-RN.

A multiple response question is basically a multiple choice question with an important distinction, more than one answer choice can be correct, and it is often necessary to select all correct responses to get full credit (or any credit) for the question.  Multiple response questions are normally more difficult to answer compared to multiple choice questions because the participant needs to simultaneously consider more information.  Because more than one answer choice is typically required for a fully correct response, these questions feature more permutations than a single-best-answer multiple choice question, and they make guessing more difficult.  Here is an example:

What are the elements of a therapeutic milieu environment? Select all that apply.

Answer Choices:

A. Clarifying patient expectations for care
B. Creating a written contract with the patient
C. Creating flexible rules for positive outcomes
D. Avoiding limitations or boundaries within the process
E. Positively reinforcing appropriate behavior

Our 265-item NCLEX-RN simulated board exam contains several dozens of these questions to provide our aspiring students the best possible practice and preparation for this important exam.  Click here for a copy of our NCLEX-RN simulated board exam test plan.  In this case, practice does make perfect as attested to by our happy nursing graduate.

Of course, developing valid, high-quality test questions is not easy, and typically, the more complex the test question, the harder they are to develop.  For the multiple response question, think of scenarios that have elements which almost always go together, like when you change your car’s oil, you always change the filter, too!  Likewise, sometimes it helps to develop scenarios that theoretically could be answered without looking at the answer choices.  That is also often an important element of a quality test question, the existence of an objective answer not dependent on a set of responses.  For more information on developing high-quality test questions including those found in nursing, please reach out here and let’s have a conversation.