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Test Questions, your thoughts?

Posted

This is half vent and half to see if i'm not just using the correct thought process here.

The question was "List 2 complications of a cast extremity"

I listed foot drop as one of my answers and it was marked incorrect. I submitted our form w/ the proper documentation from our textbook where it states that foot drop can be a complication of a leg cast.

She responded with (quote) "the test question did not indicate which extremity was casted..."

I really make an effort not to read too deeply into a question on tests, but a leg IS an extremity right? Because the question did not state a specific extremity I assumed that all extremities were fair game. If you just wanted a general complication of a cast such as skin break down, then why specify "of a cast extremity"? Am I reading too much into the question on this one?

Question 2:

One of the answers on our test for a question about RA was "loss of function of a joint". She marked those of us that chose that answer wrong because the book states "reduced use of function of a joint". Her reasoning that "loss of function" indicated complete loss of function where as "reduced use of" indicated partial loss of function. Several students argued that it was simply semantics. Thoughts on this? Is there a difference or is it just semantics?

Maybe they were looking for 2 complications that would effect any of the 4 extremities....not just the legs?

dudette10, MSN, RN

Specializes in Med/Surg, Academics. Has 10 years experience.

This is half vent and half to see if i'm not just using the correct thought process here.

The question was "List 2 complications of a cast extremity"

I listed foot drop as one of my answers and it was marked incorrect. I submitted our form w/ the proper documentation from our textbook where it states that foot drop can be a complication of a leg cast.

She responded with (quote) "the test question did not indicate which extremity was casted..."

I really make an effort not to read too deeply into a question on tests, but a leg IS an extremity right? Because the question did not state a specific extremity I assumed that all extremities were fair game. If you just wanted a general complication of a cast such as skin break down, then why specify "of a cast extremity"? Am I reading too much into the question on this one?

For this one, she must have been looking for complications that can happen on EVERY cast extremity, like...you guessed it...skin breakdown. :D

Question 2:

One of the answers on our test for a question about RA was "loss of function of a joint". She marked those of us that chose that answer wrong because the book states "reduced use of function of a joint". Her reasoning that "loss of function" indicated complete loss of function where as "reduced use of" indicated partial loss of function. Several students argued that it was simply semantics. Thoughts on this? Is there a difference or is it just semantics?

For this one, I have to ask what the other choices were.

MattiesMama

Specializes in Community Health.

Footdrop is not something I would think of as a complication of a cast...from what I understand it's usually the result of an underlying neuromuscular pathology (i.e. spinal cord injury). Sometimes it happens after prolonged immobility but it's usually because the person isn't given proper care (poor positioning, no ROM, etc.) So I would say the answer is incorrect, but not for the reason the teacher gave.

For the second-was it multiple choice and if so was "reduced function" an option? Or what other options were there? I would agree with her on that one too-when I read "loss of function" I automatically assumed it to mean that the joint was no longer functional.

As far as students fighting the question on basis of it being semantics, thats a losing battle-a "semantic" error in charting can lead to a malpractice lawsuit once your out there in the field!

llg, PhD, RN

Specializes in Nursing Professional Development. Has 44 years experience.

I am someone who often comes to the defence of the faculty (at least a little bit) when students come here to complain about them. However, not in this case. Your teacher is not being reasonable in this case.