HOW TO PREPARE A TABLE OF SPECIFICATIONS

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The Table of Specifications is a blueprint for the preparation of an exam. It serves as the “map” or guide to assigning the appropriate number of items to topics included in the course or subject. The following is a simplified method of preparing a Table of Specifications.

1. List all the topics that are included in the subject or course.
2. Assign corresponding percentages based on the professional requirements or
institutional requirements. Below is an example:

Subject – CLINICAL CHEMISTRY 2

Topics included:

a. automation – 20 %
b. electrolytes – 15 %
c. enzymology – 25 %
d. endocrinology – 20 %
e. toxicology – 20 %

This gives a total of 100 %

3. Decide on the number of items that you would like the test to be. Let’s say you
wanted a 160 item – test; the number of items per topic would then be:

a. automation – 20 % – 32
b. electrolytes – 15 % – 24
c. enzymology – 25 % – 40
d. endocrinology – 20 % – 32
e. toxicology – 20 % – 40

This gives a total of 160 items.

4. Assign the specific type of question you would like to ask depending on what
skill or cognitive learning, you would like to emphasize.
For example, you would
like to emphasize the principles in automation, then you may prepare the
questions this way:

a. automation – 32 items

Essay = 10 questions
Identification = 12 questions
Multiple choice = 20 questions

This gives a total of 32 items.
This also is done with the rest of the topics.

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