A new H5P content type: Discrete Option Multiple Choice

In 2009, Foster and Miller described their take on multiple choice tests called “Discrete Option Multiple Choice” (DOMC).

Instead of presenting all answer options to choose from at once, the options are shown successively in random. One at a time. For each option, the test taker will have to decide whether it is correct or not. That leaves four possible scenarios for each option:

  1. The option is incorrect, and the test taker marks it as incorrect: The next option will be presented if there are any left.
  2. The option is incorrect, and the test taker marks is as correct: The test taker failed. The test is over.
  3. The option is correct, and the test taker marks is as incorrect: The test taker failed.
  4. The option is correct, and the test taker marks it as correct: The test taker passed. The test is over.

That is quite uncommon. And to make things a little more complicated, even in cases 2, 3 and 4 the test taker is presented another option with a probability of 50 %.

Applying this procedure is supposed to have some benefits compared to “normal” multiple choice tests, e.g.:

  • Certain “test-wiseness” skills do not apply. It is harder to guess correct answers by looking at all the other answer options.
  • Not all options are necessarily given away, so retaking the quiz can make sense.
  • It is more likely that test takers think about each option more thoroughly.

So this could be useful right? Hochschule Hannover sponsored the development of a corresponding content type for H5P!

This is a DOMC quiz with its default settings. Notice that a user will neither see his/her results beyond the score (either 1 or 0) nor an option to view the solution. That’s the default in order to stay close to the “testing” scenario and to encourage retaking the test. As an author, you can also configure the content to show the results in detail and to enable the “Show solution” button if you want to, of course.

As usual, you have a couple of other options that you can tweak. Let’s say, you wanted this to be a little different: show the results, allow to view the solutions, present all of the the options instead of stopping, and don’t hide options that have been answered. Then the previous exercise would look like this:

And as if that was not enough, there’s even one more mode that needs a little explaining. You can decide to ask the test taker to state his/her confidence in her/his answer. According to Barenberg/Dutke (2022), this will help to improve self-reflection, self-assessment, and the ability to recognize one’s own strengths and weaknesses (metacognitive monitoring). For this content type, the confidence will also have an effect on the score. If a test taker states that he/she is only 50 % sure of her/his answer, then he/she will only receive 0.5 points for a correct answer, but an incorrect answer will only lead to a deduction of 0.5 points instead.

No, I do not want to discuss why points are deduced for wrong answers at all. Again. And again. And … 😀

This could then look like this:


Want to use it already?

I will ask the H5P core team to review the content type. Afterwards, they should release it on the H5P Hub, but this process usually takes some time.

If you want to use the content type right away, look for the Reuse button underneath the content. Use that button to download the demo content, and then upload the .h5p file onto your H5P enabled platform. Please note that you will need to have permission to install H5P libraries. Otherwise, you cannot install the content type this way. In that case, your system admin will need to assist you.

The source code is available as well, if you want to check it before installing or if you want to build the libraries yourself:

Is it available in my language?

In theory: yes! If it’s missing, you can fill in the gaps yourself on translate-h5p.tk.

Any future plans for that content type?

Not really. I was merely a contractor – like an architect that created a building but doesn’t keep working on it once the building is done.  I’ll take care of all the change requests that the H5P core team may have to bring the content type onto the H5P Hub. Additionally, I suppose that I will find time to help you on the H5P forum if you have questions. That’s what I usually do anyway. But if you claim free support or demand features as if it was your right, you’ll most likely get a “no” from me. I may add things, even consider your ideas, but at my own pace – or expect you to toss me some coin. I hope you understand that. Not all do, as I know from bad experience.