About Fill in the Blank questions

Doesn't seem familiar? Jump to the "Ultra" help about Fill in the Blank questions.

A Fill in the Blank question consists of a phrase, sentence, or paragraph with a blank space where a student provides the missing word or words. The maximum number of answers you can provide for a blank is 100. Use Fill in Multiple Blanks questions to create a question with multiple answers.

Example:

_______ is the silicate mineral with the lowest melting temperature and the greatest resistance to weathering.

More on Fill in the Blank questions with JAWS®

Fill in the Blank questions are graded automatically. Answers are scored based on if student answers match the correct answers you provide. You choose the evaluation method for answers:

  • Exact match
  • Contains part of the correct answer
  • Matches a pattern that you specify

You choose whether or not the answers are case-sensitive.

In restored courses, case sensitivity is turned off for all existing Fill in the Blank questions. Edit those questions and select Case Sensitive, if needed.


Watch a video about Fill in the Blank questions

The following narrated video provides a visual and auditory representation of some of the information included on this page. For a detailed description of what is portrayed in the video, open the video on YouTube, navigate to More actions, and select Open transcript.


Video: Fill in the Blank Questions shows how to create Fill in the Blank questions, list answers, select an evaluation method, and provide feedback.


Create a Fill in the Blank question

Doesn't seem familiar? Jump to the "Ultra" help about creating Fill in the Blank questions.

Fill in the Blank questions have two parts: the question and the set of answers. A text box appears after the question for students to type their answers.

  1. Access a test, survey, or pool. From the Create Question menu, select Fill in the Blank.
  2. Type the Question Text.
  3. To add more than one answer, select from the Number of Answers menu—up to 100. To delete an answer, select Remove.

    Type each answer and select Contains, Exact Match, or Pattern Match to specify how the answer is evaluated against a student's answer. For Contains and Exact Match, select the Case Sensitive check box if you want to take capitalization into account.

  4. Optionally, type feedback for correct and incorrect answers.
  5. Select Submit and Create Another or Submit to add the question to the test.

About creating answers

Keep answers simple and brief in the answer sets. To avoid difficulties with auto-grading, you can limit answers to one word. One-word answers prevent issues such as extra spaces or word order causing a correct answer to be scored as incorrect.

  • Select Contains from the menu in the answer to allow for abbreviations or partial answers. This option counts a student's answer as correct if it includes the word or words you specify. For example, set up a single answer that contains Franklin so that Benjamin Franklin, Franklin, B Franklin, B. Franklin, and Ben Franklin are all counted as correct answers. Then, you don't have to list all the acceptable possibilities for the answer Benjamin Franklin.
  • Provide additional answers that allow for common spelling errors. Or, select Pattern Match from the menu in the answer and create a regular expression that allows for spelling, spacing, or capitalization variations.

Pattern Match

You can create a regular expression that allows for spelling, spacing, or capitalization variations in an answer.

A regular expression is a search pattern used for matching one or more characters within a string. With regular expressions, you can count certain patterns as correct, rather than an exact text match. For example, regular expressions enable grading of the wide range of possible answers that are typical of scientific data.

In a regular expression, most characters in the string match only themselves and are called literals. Some characters have special meaning and are called metacharacters. You can conduct an internet search on "regular expressions" for a complete list. This list includes some examples:

  • A dot (.) matches any single character except newline characters.
  • Brackets [ ] match anything inside the square brackets for one character.
  • A dash (-) inside square brackets allows you to define a range. For example, [0123456789] can be rewritten as [0-9].
  • A question mark (?) makes the preceding item in the regular expression optional. For example, Dec(ember)? will match Dec and December.

Simple string examples:

  • b.t - matches with bat, bet, but, bit, b9t because any character can take the place of the dot (.).
  • b[aeui]t matches bat, bet, but, bit.
  • b[a-z]t will accept any three-letter combination that begins with b and ends with t. A number won't be accepted as the second character.
  • [A-Z] matches any uppercase letter.
  • [12] matches the target character to 1 or 2.
  • [0-9] matches the target character to any number in the range 0 to 9.

When you choose to match a pattern for an answer, you can test the pattern and a new window opens.


ULTRA: About Fill in the Blank questions

Doesn't seem familiar? Jump to the "Original" help about Fill in the Blank questions.

A Fill in the Blank question consists of a phrase, sentence, or paragraph with a blank space where a student provides the missing word or words. You can also create a question with multiple blanks.

Example:

[Patriarchy] translates to "rule by the father."

Fill in the Blank questions are graded automatically. Answers are scored based on if student answers match the correct answers you provide. You choose the evaluation method for answers:

  • Exact match
  • Contains part of the correct answer
  • Matches a pattern that you specify

You choose whether or not the answers are case-sensitive.


ULTRA: Create a Fill in the Blank question

Doesn't seem familiar? Jump to the "Original" help about creating Fill in the Blank questions.

When you create a new test, select the plus sign to open the menu. In an existing test, select the plus sign wherever you want to add a question. Select Add Fill in the Blank question.

You'll use the same process when you create questions in tests and assignments.

Type your question and add brackets around the answer. You can use the options in the editor to format the text and add formulas, files, images, and links.

Example: [Patriarchy] translates to "rule by the father."

Separate multiple correct answers with a semicolon.

Example: One of the primary colors is [red;blue;yellow].

You may also use a regular expression. Only one expression per blank will be recognized. Note that you add brackets around the regular expression and around the answer.

Example: [[a-zA-Z]] is a letter in the alphabet.

Questions have a default value of 10 points. Select the Points box to type a new value.

Note that Save is disabled because you need to make settings in the next step. Select Next Step to continue.

In the Response type menu, choose how the answer is evaluated against a student's answer:

  • Exact match
  • Contain match
  • Match a pattern

Select the Case sensitive check box if you want to take capitalization into account.

More on creating answers

Select Previous Step if you need to make edits. Select Save when you're finished.

The question displays which response type you chose, such as Responses must match exactly.

More on editing or deleting questions

About creating answers

Keep answers for the blanks simple and brief. To avoid difficulties with auto-grading, you can limit answers to one word. One-word answers prevent issues such as extra spaces or word order causing a correct answer to be scored as incorrect.

  • Select Contain match from the Response type menu to allow for abbreviations or partial answers. This option counts a student's answer as correct if it includes the word or words you specify. For example, set up a single answer that contains Franklin so that Benjamin Franklin, Franklin, B Franklin, B. Franklin, and Ben Franklin are all counted as correct answers. Then, you don't have to list all the acceptable possibilities for the answer Benjamin Franklin.
  • Select Match a pattern from the Response type menu and create a regular expression that allows for spelling, spacing, or capitalization variations.

Match a pattern

When you choose to match a pattern for an answer, you can test the pattern and a new window opens. A check mark appears for a pattern that works. You can also type an expected correct answer and test your pattern.

You'll receive an error message if your pattern can't be evaluated so you can make changes.


ULTRA: Watch a video about creating a Fill in the Blank question

The following narrated video provides a visual and auditory representation of some of the information included on this page. For a detailed description of what is portrayed in the video, open the video on YouTube, navigate to More actions, and select Open transcript.


Video: Fill in the Blank questions explains how to create a fill in the blank question type.


ULTRA: Add files to a Fill in the Blank question

To help keep your assessment content organized, you can add files within individual questions. Make a selection from the editor's Insert Content menu, such as Insert from Cloud Storage.

More on cloud storage

You can edit settings for the files you've added to questions. Select the file in the editor and then select the Edit Attachment icon in the row of editor options. You can add a Display name and Alternative text. Alternative text describes the image for people who use screen readers or visit web pages with images turned off.

You can also choose whether to insert the file as a link in the editor or to embed the file directly so it appears inline with other content you've added.


ULTRA: Edit or delete a Fill in the Blank question

Before students open the assessment, access the menu to select Edit or Delete. To change the points, select the score pill and type a new value.

You can edit a Fill in the Blank question only before students have opened the assessment. After students open the assessment, you also can't add new questions, delete a question, move the content, edit the points, or change which answers are correct.

Select Align with goal from the menu to align goals with individual assessment questions to help your institution measure achievement. After you make the assessment available, students can view information for the goals you align with assessments and questions so they know your expectations.

More on how to align goals with course content


ULTRA: Graded Fill in the Blank questions

Fill in the Blank questions are graded automatically. Answers are scored based on if student answers match the correct answers you provided. Each Fill in the Blank question displays Correct or Incorrect and which response type you chose, such as Responses must be an exact match.

You can't change the scores of individual questions graded automatically.