Matching questions are a simple way for instructors to test your knowledge of definitions, dates, and key facts. These questions are constructed so that one side contains brief definitions of terms or descriptions of events, processes, or concepts. The other side contains the dates of events, key terms, and the names of any processes or concepts described. Aside from ensuring that you accurately record your answers, you should also take the following tips into account if you hope to do well.

    • Answer the questions without the answer choices: If you are well prepared for a test, you’ll probably find matching questions very easy. To start, just read the side with the more detailed descriptions and try to think of as many answers as possible, writing them down as you go. Afterwards, you can check whether your answers are presented as choices. If they are, you’ll probably want to make these your final responses.
  • Choose logical answers: Basic logic can help you eliminate a lot of possibilities when you are answering matching questions. For instance, you will probably be able to determine from the wording of a statement whether you are looking for a date, the name of a person, the name of a process, a specialized term, etc. Look through the answer choices, eliminating as many possibilities as you can, so you can focus on the choices that could conceivably be correct.
  • Start with the answers that you are sure about: A good strategy for matching questions is to answer questions that you are sure about first and ones that you aren’t certain about last. This will help you reduce the number of possible answers, so the number of answer possibilities will be limited by the time you arrive at the questions you aren’t sure of. This will increase the chances of guessing a correct answer and make it more likely that the correct answer will be the only answer that fits.
  • Determine whether there is more than one possible choice:Sometimes, a question will have more than one possible answer, and this is when matching questions can get tricky. If this happens, circle the question, write the possible answer choices, and move on. Ideally, one of the choices will be eliminated while you answer the other questions, leaving you with the correct response.


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