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COMLEX Questions Weighted Based on Difficulty?

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WTEngel

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Just a general question:

A representative from a board prep company told our class today that COMLEX questions were all worth different point values based on the difficulty level of that particular item. So for example, a very difficult higher order item may be worth 5 points, where a simple recall item may be worth 0.5 points, and everywhere in between.

I know there are experimental items on the exam that do not factor into your grade (effectively worth 0 points), but I had never head of this before. I looked around on the internet (including NBOME) and can not find information one way or the other. No one in my class had ever heard of it, and honestly I have never seen another test prep guide where this was mentioned.

So yeah, just wondering if anyone had ever heard this before from a reliable source or otherwise had any confirmation regarding the matter.

As a side note, I do have it on very good authority that this is NOT the case on level II or III, but unfortunately that individual did not know 100% about level I.
 

Mad Jack

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Never heard of this. Doubt it is true, as nothing is mentioned about it in the methodology and it would be a big departure from how the comparable USMLE scores things. I would assume it is wrong until proven otherwise.

What has been the case in the past is that the entire test is scaled based on relative difficulty overall, not each individual item being scaled. This is the same system the USMLE utilizes, and likely how the COMLEX still operates.
 

WTEngel

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Never heard of this. Doubt it is true, as nothing is mentioned about it in the methodology and it would be a big departure from how the comparable USMLE scores things. I would assume it is wrong until proven otherwise.

What has been the case in the past is that the entire test is scaled based on relative difficulty overall, not each individual item being scaled. This is the same system the USMLE utilizes, and likely how the COMLEX still operates.

Thank you for the reply!

What you are saying is exactly how I have heard it from every other source except this particular person, particularly the part you mentioned regarding the scaling based on relative difficulty of the exam in its entirety, not item by item.

I actually raised my hand and directly asked the person for a source regarding this, because I had not been able to find one (they mentioned it yesterday and it caught my attention, then they started going on about it again today, which is when I decided to ask for a reference). Their reply was along the lines of, "It isn't necessarily published but if you've ever been to a conference with Dr. Gimpel (president of NBOME) sometimes he will let things like this slip. We also maintain contacts who keep us up to date on what is going on." - except this person's reply was a bit more like a gaffe.

Ultimately, after the person replied like that to my question, I should have just realized I had my answer already...
 

Mad Jack

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Thank you for the reply!

What you are saying is exactly how I have heard it from every other source except this particular person, particularly the part you mentioned regarding the scaling based on relative difficulty of the exam in its entirety, not item by item.

I actually raised my hand and directly asked the person for a source regarding this, because I had not been able to find one (they mentioned it yesterday and it caught my attention, then they started going on about it again today, which is when I decided to ask for a reference). Their reply was along the lines of, "It isn't necessarily published but if you've ever been to a conference with Dr. Gimpel (president of NBOME) sometimes he will let things like this slip. We also maintain contacts who keep us up to date on what is going on." - except this person's reply was a bit more like a gaffe.

Ultimately, after the person replied like that to my question, I should have just realized I had my answer already...
So basically they've got rumors taken from little bits of discussion that may or may not be correct and they're selling it as fact. I wouldn't put too much stock in it.
 

DoubleDO

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Just a general question:

A representative from a board prep company told our class today that COMLEX questions were all worth different point values based on the difficulty level of that particular item. So for example, a very difficult higher order item may be worth 5 points, where a simple recall item may be worth 0.5 points, and everywhere in between.

I know there are experimental items on the exam that do not factor into your grade (effectively worth 0 points), but I had never head of this before. I looked around on the internet (including NBOME) and can not find information one way or the other. No one in my class had ever heard of it, and honestly I have never seen another test prep guide where this was mentioned.

Which company says that? I couldn't verify it anywhere.
 
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