English: Reading Comprehension Set 42

Directions (Q.1-10): Read the following passage carefully and answer the questions given below it. Certain parts are given in bracket to answer some of the questions based on the passage.

Most of the competitive examinations conducted for admission for higher education or job recruitments are objective in nature. They have several advantages over the subjective ones, for both the examining authorities and the examinees. The multiple choice questions (MCQs) are the predominant type of objective questions. For each question a number of alternative answers, usually four, coded as (a), (b), and so on are given, one of which would be the correct or the ‘most fitting’ answer and the rest distractors. The examinee chooses and indicates the ‘correct’ answer. The evaluation is done electronically with utmost precision. The subjective type involves elaborate answering and its evaluation involves human elements, and therefore, sometimes, subject to ”vagaries”. Thus the objective type of examining has the advantages of almost error-free evaluation, efficient answering by examinees who may have good subjective knowledge but no language proficiency and considerable saving in time for evaluation.

However, the question paper preparation of objective type requires more care and talent. First, the standard of the questions must suit the level of the candidates tested. Next, while some of the questions could be straight forward, from basic concepts learnt from textbooks or classes, some should be application oriented and based on a little extensions of those basic concepts. Such questions will help identify better talent in a group, which is an important aim of competitive examinations. All the answer codes must have almost equal probability of being the correct answer and the correct answer must be randomly distributed. (Some say that the choice (c) is often the correct answer code.). The concept of negative marking for wrong answers is not acceptable to some of us. They feel that wise guessing could be allowed and should not be discouraged with penalty if it goes wrong. It should be noted that wise guessing is already allowed, as it is one of the methods of narrowing down to the correct answer after eliminating the wrong answers. If by this you are not narrowing down to the correct answer, then your guess is not wise but wild, which should be discouraged.

The implication of wild guesses can be brought out with an example of a candidate A taking an objective test. Suppose A does not even open the question booklet, but goes on marking one particular answer code, say (b), for all the 100 questions of the test, which may take less than five minutes. If there are four multiple choices, (b) would be the correct answer choice for about 25 questions, in all probability, getting him 25 marks out of the total marks of 100. Say now, B, a serious student who would have sincerely attempted might have got much less; how to tackle this situation? A should get only zero which he deserves. His 25 marks will be reduced to 0 only if (1/3) mark is deducted for every one of the 75 wrong answers. Generalising, the factor should be 1 / (k – 1) when the number of alternative answers for every question is k. The purpose of examinations, particularly competitive ones, is to correctly assess the relative merits of candidates, which is made possible by the negative marking system. Awarding of any concessions to anyone is a matter that can be taken up at a later stage.

  1. Why electronic evaluation is preferred over the one which is done subjectively?
    Electronic evaluation is almost error-free.
    Technology used builds precision in marking.
    The subjective types are bound to have human error.
    Both A and B
    Both A and C
    Option E


  2. What does the author mean by quoting the consequence of “What if a doctor makes a wrong diagnosis instead of referring it to a higher centre”?
    Wrong diagnosis can cost a patient’s life.
    Guessing an answer shows lack of merit.
    Those who get selected by luck,don’t make good doctors.
    Just like a wrong diagnosis,a wild guess in exams can cost dearly.
    None of the above
    Option D


  3. Which of the following is the nearest in meaning to “IMPLICATIONS” ?
    Both A and B
    All of them
    Option E
    Implication – the conclusion that can be drawn from something although it is not explicitly stated.


  4. Which of the following statements is incorrect according to the passage?
    Preparing objective type questions requires more skills.
    In several tests, scheme of negative marking is being adopted.
    Answering “most fitting” answer is in itself is arbitrary.
    Purpose of examinations is to assess the relative merits of candidates.
    Objective questions help identifying better talent in a group.
    Option C


  5. What according to author is important in the process of making options?
    They should be randomly distributed.
    All options must have almost equal probability of being the correct answer.
    Some options should use diversionary tactic.
    Both A and B
    None of the above
    Option D


  6. Other than the right option, “________” has been used to describe rest of the options. Identify that word from the passage
    Option C


  7. The thing which is kept in mind while making a question is
    Some question should be based application oriented as well.
    More than four options complicates a question.
    Most of the question should be practical knowledge-based.
    That which tests a candidate’s theoretical knowledge is/are better.
    Option A


  8. What do you infer from the word “VAGARIES” mentioned in the passage?
    Evaluation being error-ridden
    That which cannot be controlled and can influence a situation
    Mistakes in evaluating a specific paper
    Both A and B
    Both B and C
    Option B


  9. How does the author differentiate between a ‘wise’ guess and ‘wild’ guess?
    Guessing answers should not be penalised.
    Narrowing down answers by elimination is wise guess only.
    Implication of wild guessing can be huge.
    Objective format papers make for easy guessing of answers.
    Negative marking defeats the purpose of guessing.
    Option B


  10. Which among the following inferences can be best attributed to the concluding paragraph of the passage?
    Purpose of examinations
    Advantages of electronic evaluation
    Positives of the negatives
    Subjective over objective
    Lacunas in marking schemes
    Option C


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