Lesson 2: Indirect Assessment


Another common type of question is the fill-in-the blank item. In the sample test, Part 5 included these items. They are often found in assessment of grammar and vocabulary. While they do require students to produce language, which is different from multiple-choice questions, they are rather inauthentic in terms of language use.

Advantages of Fill-in-the-Blank


Language teachers discuss advantages of using fill-in-the-blank questions in assessing language.

Duration: 02:29

Some of the advantages to fill-in-the-blank include:

  • high reliability,
  • easier to write, and
  • limits guessing.

Disadvantages of Fill-in-the-Blank

Although they may have advantages, there are a number of problems with fill-in the blank questions.


Language teachers discuss the problems in using fill-in-the-blank questions.

Duration: 03:24

Some of the disadvantages with these kind of questions are that

  • they are harder to score,
  • numerous possible correct answers may exist,
  • what is being measured is hard to define,
  • takes more time for students to complete them, and
  • they are not communicative.