I recently gave a 3 question quiz worth 3 points. I made a typo on one question that led to none of the multiple choice questions being correct. What is the best way to handle this? Give everyone credit for that question? Curve the quiz one point upwards? Remove that question from the grade?

  • What is the difference between giving everyone 1 credit and curving up the quiz by 1 point ?
    – Or4ng3h4t
    Oct 3 at 13:39
  • 10
    I have experienced your situation and found no good solution. However, it taught me a lesson: all of the subsequent MCQ I wrote contained, for each question, an answer "None of the other answers".
    – Plop
    Oct 3 at 14:44
  • Out of curiosity: What typo changes a question or answer so badly that the correct answer cannot be identified any more? The last typo I made was writing "Netwerk" instead of "Netzwerk", and none of my students had any problems understanding what I meant...
    – Sabine
    Oct 4 at 16:07
  • Often in multiple choice tests the difference between the right and wrong answers will be quite subtle to force the test taker to think harder about which one is correct. A typo like putting a decimal point in the wrong place, or writing the wrong units could easilly leave the right answer no more plausible than the wrong ones. Oct 4 at 17:41

1 Answer 1


I would give everyone credit. It ameliorates any issues with people complaining they spent time on that question to the detriment of the others (like removing would). If all your quizzes are worth three points, it keeps that consistent too.

My answer might be different for something higher-stakes, but earn good will by just scoring it for everyone.

Curving (if you mean adding 1 to each score) doesn't make any sense, since those that randomly got it "correct" would get an extra point for no reason.

  • 3
    Yes, my quizzes are very low stakes, so that makes perfect sense.
    – MDB
    Oct 3 at 1:31
  • 13
    To further emphasize your last sentence: no one got it correct. Even if someone chose the answer that was originally intended to be marked correct, OP has identified that through their typo, this answer was not correct, either.
    – Bryan Krause
    Oct 3 at 14:49
  • 1
    @BryanKrause Well yes, that was my point. Added some scare quotes to clarify. Oct 3 at 22:28

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