Evaluation of peer-generated MCQs to assess and support learning in a problem-based learning programme

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Problem-based learning (PBL) students report uncertainty on the depth and breadth of learning required, and this is a significant stressor and challenge. Student-generated MCQ questions were trialled and evaluated as a way to support depth and breadth of learning.


Students set MCQs relating to specified learning issues, and an analysis and evaluation of setting and answering the MCQs were performed. The Revised Study Process Questionnaire (R-SPQ-2F) and final written examination scores were correlated to question setting and answering. Students were asked to rate the impact of the MCQs on their learning in PBL.


A total of 147 questions were created and 2373 answered. Students reported challenges with setting questions, although these made them think more deeply and helped their learning and affirming their learning progress. MCQs authored indicated significant associations with Understanding, and examination scores were associated with MCQs authored. Students reported a moderate response to how the MCQs supported their depth and breadth of learning.


While MCQ setting was perceived as a useful learning exercise, students engaged to different levels and experienced challenges. Students were uncertain whether the MCQs helped clarify the depth and breadth of learning in PBL, as they were not clear whether the questions set by their peers were relevant to the required learning outcomes.

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