Increased coverage, facial validity based on similarity to many bar examinations, and reduced scoring time all support combining bar examination type essay questions and Multistate Bar Examination multiple choice questions to form a typical three or four hour law school examination. Unfortunately, great care must be exercised or the resulting examination will be seriously flawed. In particular, six challenges must be met to produce a quality examination. Those six are: 1. Mismatches between the examination’s questions and scoring methods when compared to teaching, curriculum, or institutional goals; 2. Insufficient sample size; 3. Insufficient resources for drafting, pre-testing, and processing; 4. Two or three-choice multiple choice questions masquerading as four-choice questions; 5. Unintended clues or cross contamination among questions; 6. Failure to maintain the stated scoring weights for each portion of the examination. This article provides explanations and suggestions to help law professors fulfill their responsibility to meet each of these six challenges and to produce examinations of the kind deserved by all stakeholders, especially our students.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/charles_senger/1/