Korean J Med Educ.  2004 Aug;16(2):219-226.

Usability of Extended-matching Type Items in the Korean Medical Licensing Examinations (2002, 2003)

  • 1National Health Personnel Licensing Examination Board, Seoul, Korea.
  • 2Department of Parasitology, Hallym University, Chuncheon Korea. shuh@hallym.ac.kr
  • 3College of Medicine and Institute of Medical Education, Hallym University, Chuncheon, Korea.


In 2002, extended-matching type (R-type) items were introduced to the Korean Medical Licensing Examination. To evaluate the usability of R-type items, the results of the Korean Medical Licensing Examination in 2002 and 2003 were analyzed based on item types and knowledge levels. METHODS: Item parameters, such as difficulty and discrimination indexes, were calculated using the classical test theory. The item parameters were compared across three item types and three knowledge levels. RESULTS: The values of R-type item parameters were higher than those of A- or K-type items. There was no significant difference in item parameters according to knowledge level, including recall, interpretation, and problem solving. The reliability of R-type items exceeded 0.99. With the R-type, an increasing number in correct answers was associated with a decreasing difficulty index. CONCLUSION: The introduction of R-type items is favorable from the perspective of item parameters. However, an increase in the number of correct answers in pick 'n'-type questions results in the items being more difficult to solve.


Medical education; Classical test theory; Difficulty index; Discrimination index; Extended-matching type item
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