True/False Exams

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Teachers use true-false questions to assess students’ understanding of specific topics. There is no ambiguity in these types of questions since only one response is correct.

Read the Questions Carefully

Carefully read the question and underline important phrases and words providing hints about the answer. Separate long or complicated questions into sections and review each section separately. Then identify unrelated words and phrases, and highlight key phrases providing insight into the question.

Look for Clue Words

Questions with because, always, never, only, and all within them are typically false. Questions with often, usually, probably, most, generally, and seldom within them are typically true. Try to identify phrases used in textbooks or lectures within questions. Also, look for similarities in other questions to decipher clues that can be helpful in answering confusing ones.

Don’t Quibble

Many students over analyze true-false questions by looking for hidden meanings. Professors typically do not try to trick students; rather, they’re interested in assessing how well students understand the material. Questions that appear to be true are usually correct. Avoid choosing false simply because there is a grammatical error. If you’re confused about a question, don’t hesitate clarifying it with the professor.


If you do not know the correct answer, and no penalties are incurred for guessing, make an educated guess. You have a 50 percent chance of correctly answering the question. Pay close attention to the question since if any part of the question is wrong, false is the correct answer. There typically tend to be more true-false questions that are true than false. Try to decipher patterns if multiple questions confuse you. However, you must have gotten a majority of the answers correct for this to be a successful strategy.

Don’t Change Answers

Resist the temptation to change answers unless there is good reason to do so. If you’re unsure about your selections, keep the original answers.

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