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When taking an examination, regardless of the subject, have you ever stated that is a trick question? If you have, then you are not alone. Being an educator, I posed that very question to my students. Astoundingly, the entire class, seventy-four United States Army Warrant Officers, felt that at one time or another they were victims of test trickery. Examinations are a frequent aspect of academic life, requiring constant expectation for students to demonstrate their acquired knowledge and skills. This drives the question: what is the motivation of trickery in examinations? As both a student and an educator, I have learned how to become a better instructor through my experiences, my purpose of testing the students, and my chosen evaluation structure. Throughout my progression from a student to an educator, there has been many learning experiences. Once certified as a United States Army professional development instructor and an instrument examiner/instructor pilot, a mentor provided me with a word of advice. I remember him telling me that there are two types of educators, posing the question, “Do you know what they are?” I stated the logical answer of “good and bad.” The look of dissatisfaction cloaked his face explaining, “No. There are teachers, and, then, there are evaluators; you need to find the balance between both.” At the time of his statement, I did not fully understand what he meant. Being the youthful know-it-all, my facial expression probably conveyed the statement, “Duh.” Remembering that conversation that occurred over nineteen years ago, I wish I could rewind the clock and give myself the proverbial kick in the pants. Inept to understand then, but I do now. I recall about how hard I was on my students d... ... middle of paper ... ...diness statements and complex language, ensuring that it was easy for my students to read and comprehend. Furthermore, I learned to avoid "all of the above" and “none of the above" selections; they will not display what the student’s knowledge of the subject. Finally, I always ask for feedback on exams from the students; this can offer valuable insights for evaluation improvement. Over time, filled with exposure to different instructional techniques, experiences with different students learning styles, and further education regarding instructional methods, the knowledge in my early mentor’s statement was unveiled. I found to avoid trickery in examinations educators need to be educated, patient, and willing to listen. In addition, “the reality is that it doesn't matter how motivated students are; what matters is how students are motivated” (grade inflation).

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