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MCQ Nostalgia and talkPhysics


I saw somebody on the google physics groups fondly recall the brown book pictured here, which accompanied the popular physics text book written by George Porter that was widely used for the pre-2002 syllabus. It was entirely full of Multiple Choice Questions, which were in the style of the opening section of Leaving Cert Physics Paper of that era.


If I understood things correctly, the new syllabus introduced in 2002 (and phased out in ????) did away with the use of MCQs not out of cruelty to students, who generally liked them, but out of kindness. Because, as much as students may have liked them, they were not very good at them. In fact, they were so bad at them that, on average, they scored less than they should have done through random selection: the sad reality was that the little bit of physics education they had had only served to confuse them enough to avoid the right answers.


But a combination of the need for online testing and the great set of questions put up by the IoP last week at https://www.talkphysics.org/groups/teaching-physics-in-ireland/ could see a resurgence in their popularity. To access the full set of questions, you will have to register first at https://www.talkphysics.org/, but that would also serve to open you up to a whole community of physics teachers not only in Ireland but in the UK too. With many resources available to share.


Including this wonderful group who are putting together a database of MCQs already programmed into MS Forms, easy to duplicate and largely applicable to the Leaving Cert. I have just shared this link there to a test based on the IoP questions mentioned above (and aimed at testing students on LC Mechanics) so that I wouldn't feel too bad about lifting some of theirs. Feel free to use.


Anybody else interested in sharing resources through this page, please let me know.


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