Frequently asked questions
Got a question about our distance courses? Find answers to our most frequently asked questions below. If you can’t find the answer you’re looking for, please contact us.
Q: What if I am unsure about which course to do?
A: Moore Access is ideal for this purpose as you can check out the first six subjects online. When you decide you are ready for the challenge, you can enrol in either the PTC Award or the ITS Award and then, as a bonus, your Moore Access subscription starts again for no extra cost! Find out more detailed information about Moore Access here.
Questions about enrolment
Q: Why can’t I enrol a group on the online enrolment form?
A: This option is not currently available. If you are enrolling a group each student will need to individually enrol online including payment of the correct fee and the nomination of a supervisor. Please note two things of particular importance regarding groups:
- Group formation, leadership and participation is a voluntary arrangement amongst the members concerned, and no group or its leadership is authorised to act as an agent on behalf of Moore College. Our responsibilities are limited to supplying, on receipt of the requisite monies and information, the goods and services as advertised in our current brochure.
- The College deals with members of the group directly as its own students on the information they supply to us individually or through their leader.
We are in the process of developing resources for group leaders. As these become available they will be placed on the website.
Questions about exams and assesment
Q: What is the policy on allowing Bibles in examinations?
A: Students are allowed to take a Bible into the examination room. See conditions below:
Extra Pages inserted in Bibles
- Students will be responsible for ensuring that an appropriate Bible is supplied for their examination.
- Exam supervisors will be responsible for ensuring that the Bible supplied by the student meets the above conditions.
Note: We strongly encourage you to take the Bible you use every day (other than an electronic Bible) into the exam as doing so will help you remember and apply what you have learned after the course has finished. You may bring a Study Bible or a Bible you have annotated if it is your everyday Bible but should guard against it becoming a distraction. Finally, while Bibles are not required for the exam we strongly recommend that you have one present.
As a result of Bibles now being allowed in the exams all questions about a specific passage of scripture will contain a reference to that passage of scripture so that it can be found in your Bible.
Q: Why the move to multiple choice questions?
A: Many years of experience across a wide range of disciplines has shown that well written multiple choice questions are useful for assessing the ability of a student to understand recall a specified body of content. Since understanding and recalling specific content is the focus of the PTC Award, multiple choice questions are appropriate tools to use for the PTC Award. However as the ITS Award extends students beyond that required for the PTC Award we augment multiple choice questions with other types of assessment for the ITS Award.
Q: Why use multiple choice questions that have multiple right answers?
A: It is true that on average 40% of questions in one of our multiple choice exams with have multiple right answers. Where a question does have multiple right answers ALL correct answers must be selected for a full marks to be awarded for that question. There are several reasons why we take this approach to multiple choice questions.
The main reason that we sometimes ask questions that have more than one right answer is that we believe that assessment ought to be designed to match to the content, not the other way around. Due to the integrated nature of theology the content provided by Moore College faculty doesn’t naturally break down into discreet chunks where a single idea can be isolated from all others. So where understanding a concept requires grasping two distinct but related ideas, each of which offers an incomplete picture without the other, it is better to write questions that require a student to recall both ideas simultaneously. We have found that using multiple choice questions involving multiple right answers is an excellent way of capturing some of the distinct features of the approach taken to theology taken by the Moore College faculty.
Because all questions are worth the same amount of marks, taking this approach to our multiple choice questions is that all key learning points are treated equally. For example, understanding key learning points with several sub-components that have to be understood together is not more valuable than understanding other key learning points just because of their complexity. This is entirely appropriate for we shouldn’t think that the most important aspects of theology are necessarily the most complex and nor should the assessment system treat them as if they are.
Q: Are questions that require more than one answer clearly marked in the exam?
A: The exams do not distinguish questions requiring more than one answer from those that require only one answer. In general, all questions should be treated as possibly requiring more than one answer and students should be sure to consider every option of every question carefully in selecting their answers.
Q: Is there a real difference between missing a right answer in the exam and getting an answer wrong?
A: Yes. Missing an answer (i.e., failing to select a correct answer) indicates that there is something that a student is ignorant about – something that they just don’t know. Selecting an incorrect answer indicates that there is something that the student thinks is true but isn’t really true, that is, the student is in error. While neither ignorance nor error are good things, they are different and should be distinguished. By tracking where a student has missed right answers and where they have actually selected wrong answers we can assess more accurately those areas of the subject content that require most attention. Further, although marks are lost in the exam for selecting wrong answers, marks are not lost for missing right answers. Put another way, error is treated more seriously than ignorance.
Q: Why use Multiple Choice Questions in which marks are lost for having wrong answers?
A: Using a marking system in which marks are lost for selecting wrong answers is necessary once students are allowed to make multiple selections in individual questions. Were this not allowed then a student could simply select every possible option for every question and thereby guarantee that they had in the process selected all the correct answers. Put another way, losing marks for wrong answers is required by allowing multiple right answers, which is in turn required in having the questions conform as closely as possible to the content of the teaching notes.
Q: How does the marking work in practice?
A: There are six factors to consider when explaining how the marking system we use works in practice. First, some questions in the exam have multiple right answers and most questions also have multiple wrong answers. Second, all questions are of equal value. Third, incorrect selection result is marks being lost. Fourth, at most 1 mark can be lost for getting an answer wrong. Fifth, all correct selections within a question are worth the same amount and all incorrect selections in a question are worth the same amount. Sixth, no marks are lost for not selecting a right answer – a student can always choose not to answer. Below are two example to demonstrate how these factors work in practice.
Consider a simple question with four options, one of which is correct and three of which are wrong. In this case the correct answer is simply worth 1 mark and each incorrect selection results in 1/3 of a mark being lost. If a student picks the correct answer and no wrong answers they receive 1 mark. However if a student picks the right answer but also picks one of the wrong answers they will receive 2/3 of a mark in total.
Consider a complex question with 5 options, 3 of which are correct and 2 of which are incorrect. Here the total mark that can be awarded is divided equally among the 3 right answers, so each right answer is worth 1/3 of a mark. In the same way, the total mark that could be lost is divided equally among the two wrong answers, so each wrong answer selected results in 1/2 of a mark being lost. Image a student picks two of the three right answers but also picks one of the wrong answers. In this case the mark received is (1/3 + 1/3 – 1/2) = 1/6 of a mark awarded.
The total mark received for the multiple choice section overall is arrived at by adding up the mark received for each question. However, as can be seen from the examples above the mark received for each question is not simply a matter of the number of right and wrong answers picked.
It is worthwhile to remember that in this marking system right answers in any question are rarely worth less than wrong answers in questions with multiple right answers and are usually worth more slightly more. Also, choosing more right answers than wrong answers in a given question will always result in a net positive result, although it may be a small positive.
Q: How do I prepare for an exam based on multiple choice questions?
A: The exam questions are drawn from exactly the same bank of questions used to generate our online quizzes (available through Moore Access). So a great way of preparing for the exam is going online and doing the quizzes. Since the quizzes also contain detailed comments explaining the subject content it turns out that a great way of preparing for the exam is also a great way of learning the subject content. And that, of course, is the way it should always be.
Questions about the ITS Award
Q: I have completed the six subjects in the former Theology Certificate, the ITS course seems to cover the same subjects, is it intended that students need to study them again all be it in a different format?
A: You do not need to study these subjects again. We will automatically credit your previous studies towards either the ITS Award or the PTC Award.
After Term 4 2014 finishes, any subjects you have completed will be credited into the ITS. You can enrol online for those subjects here: http://www.moore.edu.au/distance/enrol.
Q: Can you tell me more about coaches and their role in ITS?
A: As the ITS provides a way of engaging with the content at a deeper level and so has a more rigorous assessment it also comes with greater personal support and investment from Moore College Distance. This personal support comes partly in terms of the ITS coaches. These coaches will contact students four times through the course of a term, working with them to ensure that they learn as much as possible through their enrolment.
The ITS coaches engage with students in three primary ways. First, they encourage students to continue with their studies and make it to their exam. By watching your progress ITS coaches help to keep you on track with your learning. By getting a sense of how you learn best the coach can also suggest strategies to keep you engaged with your learning and complete the assessment for the subject. Second, the coaches explain the subject content when questions arise. By tracking your results through the weekly quizzes the coach will also be able to identify problem areas before they become too serious. This means that when you arrive at the exam you should be well prepared. Further, after your exam it will be your personal coach who delivers and explains your results and discusses with you what you next steps in theological study might be. Finally, for students who are continuing to make good progress through the notes the ITS coaches are available to provide feedback on a ministry application project in which a student applies what they are learning in the course to their ministry in their local church.
Q: What is the ITS Ministry Application Project?
A: The Ministry Application Project (MAP) is an entirely optional project in which a student can work with their coach to apply in practice what they have been learning to their local ministry. MAPs do not lead to any advanced academic credit and should not be understood in purely academic terms. Find out more about MAPs here.
Questions about the PTC Award
Q: I still want to know more details about PTC Award, where can I find out more?
A: There is a detailed handbook available here.
Questions about changes to our courses
Q: What are the differences between PTC Award and the ITS Award?
A: The PTC and ITS share a common content, provided by the Moore College Faculty, although the ITS includes addititonal subjects not offered in the PTC course which is limited to 6 subjects. The central difference between the courses is found in the level at which understanding of that content is assessed and the support provided to reach that level. Also the learning mode is different with traditional correspondence for PTC and ITS using exclusively online mode of delivery. Upon enrolment an ITS student will be granted access to the Online Learning Environment (OLE) which contains all subject materials and assessments necessary to complete the course. Moore Access is now included in both an ITS and PTC enrolment at no extra cost.
Questions about the Moore Distance Chinese course
Q: How is the Chinese correspondence course administered?
A: The Chinese course will be administered completely online. All notes, quizzes and extra reading are accessible over the Internet in our online classroom, and support provided via email and forums by our online moderators. End-of-term exams will be conducted online as well!
Q: Is this the same course as the English?
A: Yes. The Chinese correspondence course has the same first 6 subjects as the PTC Award. They share the same ethos and uses the same course notes, but differ in some extra resources due to availability. The Chinese end-of-term exams also have a written component that is different to the English arrangement.
Q: What if the online classroom isn’t accessible?
A: We will be monitoring the accessibility of our website as much as we can. If you think that access has being denied in your country of residence, please let us know via [email protected].