Multiple Choice Answer Sheets/Cards (MCQ/EMQ)

What is a MCQ, MRQ or EMQ answer sheet/card? Can I use a pen to fill in my answers?

For some examinations or in class assessments you may need to use a multiple choice answer sheet/card to show your answers.

Schools refer to multiple choice style question papers in three ways:

  • Extended Multiple Choice (EMQ) 
  • Multiple Choice questions (MCQ) 
  • Multiple Response questions (MRQ) 

Each of the sheets/cards used for these type of examinations or assessments are used by many different schools and some have their own designs for the top of the sheets/cards.  It can therefore be confusing if you receive different designs from one examination/assessment to another.  However, although they may look different at first glance, the information required on each remains the same.


For MCQ/MRQ style examinations/assessments there should be five statements associated with each question and you will need to fill in one or more of the five boxes labelled A to E on the sheet/card.   Or you may need to answer True or False to a number of statements.

The number of questions will vary depending on the subject of the examination/assessment, on an MCQ/MRQ paper there could be anything up to 100 questions.  You must read the instructions on the question paper as these will differ depending on the school responsible for the examination/assessment.  Note:  Even though the sheets give the impression there will be 100 questions, you must check the question paper, as that is not necessarily the case.


The EMQ style of questions can differ greatly from one school to the next.  The EMQ answer sheet has boxes labelled A to P.  Again the number of questions will differ depending on the subject and could be anything up to 210 questions.  Schools use the EMQ style of examination/assessment differently, you must read carefully the instructions given on the front page of the question paper and at the start of the section/questions. Some schools will only offer you 5 answer choices - A to E, whilst others may offer A to H, read the question, decide on your answer and fill in the corresponding box on the EMQ Answer sheet/card.  Note:  Even though the sheets give the impression there will be up to 210 questions, you must check the question paper, as that is not necessarily the case.

Completing a MCQ/MRQ/EMQ answer sheet/card

If the question paper has a section which needs you to use one of the above answer sheets/cards, the correct type of answer sheet/card should be on your desk and the question paper should contain clear instructions on the front page and at the start of the multiple choice section:

  • Write your name, the date, the module code (as shown at the top left on the question paper) and the examination/assessment title (as shown on the question paper) in the boxes provided in the top left of the answer sheet/card. 
  • In the section labelled student ID number (top right) write your student identification number in the boxes.  This is the nine-digit number printed on your Student Identification card. 
  • Fill in the answers to the questions using the lower part of the sheet/card. 
  • To correct a mistake, remove the pencil mark completely using an eraser.  Try not to smudge the answer sheet/card.
  • Use an HB-grade (or softer) pencil to fill in the boxes. Do not use ink, ballpoint or felt-tip pen as it will not be read. Do not use ticks, crosses or circles. 
  • You must answer all questions clearly on the answer sheet/card provided.
  • Do not fold, crease or punch any holes in the answer sheet/card or it will not be read by the card-reader.
  • At the end of the examination/assessment, it is your responsibility to make sure all your answer sheets/cards and/or script books and any pink or blue question paper are handed in.