With effect from 26 February 2014 in computer-based exams (CBEs) and June 2014 in paper-based exams, there will be various changes to the way in which the exam is structured. The purpose of this article is to explain the changes to the structure and to the styles of question that will be encountered by candidates.
At present the paper is not formally divided into sections and is made up of 50 questions, each worth two marks.
The new structure will see the paper divided into two parts. Part A of the paper will comprise questions worth both one mark and two marks, but the style of these questions will remain similar to those that are currently set. In total there will be 16 one-mark questions and 30 two-mark questions. Part B of the paper will introduce a new type of question, which will be described as multiple-task questions (MTQs) in this article. There will be six MTQs in part B of the paper, each worth four marks. There are six syllabus areas, and there will be one MTQ on each of them. Each MTQ will be specific to a syllabus area, with no crossover between the six generic parts of the syllabus.
As just explained, Section A of the new style exam will contain a mix of 30 two-mark questions and 16 one-mark questions. One-mark questions are new and are usually shorter and will either have no background statement or a brief one. The structure of these questions is that they will either be multiple-choice questions (MCQ) where there is one correct option from two or three options, or they will be multiple-response (MR) questions where there are two correct options from a total of three. In the MCQ versions of the one-mark questions, the two option questions may be presented as true or false questions.
See Figure 1 below: