Alternative Item Type (AIT) FAQ
Can I get partial credit on AIT problems?
July of 2017 brought four new additional problem types to the FE Exam, on top of the already standardized Multiple Choice questions that we are accustomed to seeing.
These problem types will include MULTIPLE CORRECT OPTIONS, DRAG & DROP, POINT & CLICK, and FILL IN THE BLANK.
- MULTIPLE CORRECT OPTIONS are what they sound like, you as the examinee will have the option to choose whichever choices you see as correct.
- DRAG AND DROP will require test takers to click on and drag items to match, sort, rank, or label.
- POINT AND CLICK will require examinees to click on part of a graphic to answer the problem.
- FILL IN THE BLANK will provide a space for you to enter a response to the question.
All these problems have one thing in common…multiple variables that contribute to a correct answer.
In the past, we were used to ONLY seeing Multiple Choice questions with a SINGLE correct answer.
If we didn’t know the answer, we could try and reverse engineer it from the answer options given…or if all else failed, “choose C”.
Oh, the glorious advice of “just choose C”.
Well, with each additional potential correct answer these new AIT problems will present, the less the chance that we are going to be able to “just choose C.”
There will still be an actual single correct answer to derive, however, it will be composed of more than just one of the answer options.
So with all this being said, it makes sense that with this new change being implemented to the FE Exam, that students will now have the opportunity to receive partial credit for partial correct answers.
Will we get partial credit for the AIT problems?
I mean, this is how it went down in college, in elementary school, heck…even in preschool, right?
Is this going to happen?
The FE Exam has always been a “you either get it or you don’t” kind of exam…and that’s not going to change.
To illustrate this, say you are given a problem with 6 answer options and it asks you to “mark all that are correct”.
If 5 have been slated as correct and should be marked, and you mark 4, or you select 5, but one of them is wrong…the NCEES is…
Well, they aren’t going to show you any love.
Thumbs down emoji to that!
Here is the thing though, check your mindset.
Yes, this sucks, but the reality of it is this…it’s the absolute same circumstance for everybody who is taking the exam.
If it’s going to affect you, it’s going to affect the others just as much, we just have to learn how to hack these problems to the best of our ability using the various strategies that we have outlined within our program and on this site.
Those strategies include identifying keywords, CTRL+F searching the NCEES Reference Handbook, amongst others.
The game is about to change, and for many, it’s intimidating.
But it is what it is, the same for every single person stepping foot in to that Pearson Vue testing center.
Only difference is this, you know what’s coming, and you are putting in the work to get prepared.
We promise to not let it be any other way.
As always, with Love, Prepineer
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