Computer Based Testing Trial Questions
In your exam you may find that you have some additional questions to answer which take the total number of questions above the published number for the exam. These are trial questions – questions which have recently been written for us, and on which we need to collect statistics so that we can see if those particular questions are good enough to go into the exam as live questions.
Why are trial questions needed?
Trial questions are not scored, and you do get extra time for them. It is important to us that the questions you get in your exam are fair – neither too difficult nor too easy, and free from ambiguity.
The live questions you will receive have all been through this process of trialling. Other candidates have taken them over a period of time, and we have been able to gather statistics on their performance. The contribution of other candidates in this way ensures that you experience an exam which is as fair as it can be. When you answer the trial questions in your exam, you are helping future candidates to experience the same fairness in their exam and your cooperation is much appreciated.
Why doesn’t the CISI count trial questions in candidates’ final scores?
We do not count trial questions in candidates’ final scores because we do not know how good the questions are until statistics are gathered on how they have performed (eg, how many candidates get them right, how many people choose each option).
If a trial question is not sound, we could be awarding a mark for a question which is much easier than questions in the live exam, and this would not help us to uphold the standards which firms and individuals expect of us.
Are there always trial questions in exams?
No, not all exams will include trial questions. If you don't have any trial questions in your exam, this means that the exam does not need to be updated or refreshed at the moment. Similarly, in some exams there are more trial questions than others, depending on how much change we need to make to the exam in the coming year. You can be assured that you will receive the appropriate amount of time to answer the questions.