Tests and Surveys

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    What's the difference between a test and a survey?

    Instructors use tests to assess your mastery over course content and objectives. Your instructor assigns point values to questions in a test. You submit your test for grading and the results are recorded. You can view your grades when your instructor makes them available to you.

    Instructors can use surveys for polling purposes and evaluations. Surveys aren't graded, but they do appear as complete or incomplete. Your responses to survey questions are anonymous.

    Surveys aren't supported in the Ultra Course View at this time.


    Where do I access tests and surveys?

    Doesn't seem familiar? Jump to the "Ultra" help about accessing tests.

    You can find tests and surveys in any content area, learning module, lesson plan, or folder.


    Watch a video about tests

    This video explains how to access a test online, submit your answers, and view grades and feedback in the Original Course View.

    Video: How to take a test online


    Tips for taking a test

    Start your test as soon as you can. If your instructor makes a test available for three days, plan to take the test early on the first day. If you have an issue, you will have time to contact technical support and your instructor.

    Read all of the instructions. If you have any trouble with your test or understanding test questions, contact your instructor immediately.

    Check your internet connection.

    • A wired connection is usually more reliable than a wireless connection.
    • Check with your instructor and institution before you take a test with a cellular data connection. Most institutions will advise you to avoid a cellular data connection. Exceptions: Your institution is a Blackboard mobile-enabled site with the Blackboard app available and your instructor has created a mobile-compatible test.

    Don't refresh the page, close the window, or use the browser's back button while you take a test. If you have problems during a test, contact your instructor immediately.


    Take a test or survey

    Doesn't seem familiar? Jump to the "Ultra" help about taking tests.

    Navigate to the test or survey and select the title. On the next page, select Begin. Your instructor might require that you type a password to begin. If necessary, type the password and select Submit. The system continues to prompt for a valid password until you provide the correct one.

    Don't use the browser's back button during a test or survey as this may cause loss of data. If you have problems during a test, contact your instructor immediately.

    Take Test or Survey page

    View the details. At the top of each test or survey, you can view the information about multiple attempts, the timer, navigation, and any optional description and instructions. You're also informed if you must complete the test or survey after you open it. Select the arrows next to the information section to collapse or expand it.

    More on forced completion and no backtracking

    If your test or survey is timed, you're informed of the instructor's choice. The timer status bar keeps you updated on the time left.

    1. Auto-submit: The test or survey saves and submits automatically when time expires. The Submitted page appears.

      -OR-

    2. Continue beyond the time limit: You receive no automatic penalty if you continue beyond the time limit. However, final scoring decisions are made by your instructor. Talk to your instructor if you have questions about this setting. The total time you spend on the test or survey is recorded and available to your instructor when you submit.

      If you save and exit, the timer continues to run. For example, you start on Tuesday, save and exit, and then complete the test on Thursday. The timer will show that you took 48 hours to complete.

    View completed questions. The Question Completion Status section displays a saved icon for each question you have answered. You can select a question number to jump to that question. Select the arrows next to the status section to collapse or expand it.

    Clear your multiple choice answer. If you are unsure of your selection on a multiple choice question, you may double-click to clear your answer choice.

    Your answers are auto-saved. You can also select Save Answer next to each question or Save All Answers as you work. When you save an answer, Saved appears in the question's row.

    Ready to submit? When you're finished, select Save and Submit. You may see your score immediately if all questions are auto-graded and your instructor releases this information. However, your instructor must manually grade some question types such as Essays.

    More on feedback and grades


    View a test question with a rubric

    Doesn't seem familiar? Jump to the "Ultra" help about viewing rubrics.

    If your instructor associated a rubric with an Essay, File Response, or Short Answer question, select View Rubric. You can view the grading criteria before you answer the question.


    Timer status bar

    When you take a timed test or survey, the remaining time appears on a status bar. Use the arrows next to the timer to collapse or expand it.

    Timer warnings appear when half the time, 5 minutes, 1 minute, and 30 seconds remain. When the remaining time reads 1 minute, 30 seconds, the status bar turns yellow. At 1 minute, the warning is red, and at 30 seconds, both the status bar and the warning are red. If you collapse the timer, you won't see the color changes.


    Presentation options

    In the test or survey information section, you're informed about which presentation options your instructor chose.

    If force completion is enabled, you must complete the test or survey the first time you open it. You can't exit and continue the test or survey later. The Save function is available for you to save your answers, but you can't exit and re-enter.

    If backtracking is prohibited, you can't go back to questions you have already answered. An error appears when you attempt to use the Back function within the test or survey.

    Your instructor can choose to present questions all-at-once or one-at-a-time.

    All-at-once presents all of the questions at the same time. These options are available:

    • Store answers. Select Save All Answers. The Question Completion Status section displays a saved icon for each question you have answered. You may change answers after you save them.
    • Finish the test or survey. Select Save and Submit. You receive a confirmation and a receipt page that states that the test or survey is completed.

    A one-at-a-time test presents questions separately. Only one question appears on the screen at a time. You decide when you're ready to move on to the next question. These options are available:

    • Navigate through questions. Use the navigation arrows (<<, <, >, or >>). The Question Completion Status section shows the current location in the test and the overall number of questions. When backtracking is prohibited, the arrows don't appear.
    • Save answers. Select Save All Answers. Questions you answered up to this point are saved.
    • Finish the test or survey. Select Save and Submit. You receive a confirmation and a receipt page that states that the test or survey is completed.

    Retake a test or survey

    When you first open a test or survey, you're informed if you have multiple attempts. If your instructor placed a limit on the number of attempts, the number is stated. You can also see which attempt you're starting.

    When you return to a test or survey to start another submission, you can see how many attempts exist and how many you've used.

    Your instructor decides which test attempt score is recorded for your grade such as the average of all attempts or the highest attempt score.


    Grades and feedback

    Doesn't seem familiar? Jump to the "Ultra" help about grades and feedback for tests.

    The majority of questions in tests are auto-graded. Your instructor defines the correct answers and assigns points to each question. The system validates your answers and assigns the score.

    Essay, File Response, and Short Answer questions aren't auto-graded. Your instructor must manually grade these question types. Grades for tests with these question types are released after your instructor finishes grading and allows it.

    Your instructor can use a rubric for grading an Essay, File Response, or Short Answer question and make the rubric available to you. Select View Rubric when you review the graded test to view the grading criteria for the question.

    You may see your score immediately after you complete the test if all questions are auto-graded and your instructor releases this information. Your instructor may choose a date in the future to release test scores while your classmates to take the test.

    After you complete a test, the performance results you receive depend on the options selected by your instructor. For example, your instructor may only show the final score for one test, while for another test the final score and correct answers are displayed. Feedback includes one or more of these items:

    • Final score for the test
    • Answers submitted
    • Correct answers
    • Feedback for the questions

    To access feedback and grade information, select the test in the content area or My Grades. On the View Attempts page, select the grade link in the Calculated Grade column to access the test, your answers, and any instructor feedback.

    More on grades


    ULTRA: Where do I access tests?

    Doesn't seem familiar? Jump to the "Original" help about accessing tests.

    On the Course Content page, select the title of your test. Your instructor may also organize tests in folders. Surveys aren't supported in the Ultra Course View at this time.

    You can also access tests in the activity stream or in the calendar if your instructor added due dates. If the due date has passed for a test, you’re alerted in the Important section of the activity stream.

    After you select a test, the Details & Information panel appears. You can see the due date, number of attempts allowed, the time limit if imposed, and possibly goals and a rubric for grading. You can also see if the due date has passed and if any submissions are or will be late.

    More on time limits

    Your instructor may also assign tests to groups of students. Your group name is listed after the group assignment title.

    More on group tests

    If no time limit exists, you can view a test and you don't have to submit it. When you select Start attempt, you're only opening it to view it. You don't have to submit it when you open it. After you view it or add some work, select Save and Close in the panel. If you previously started the test, any work you added was saved. Select Continue attempt to resume working.

    However, if your instructor added a time limit, you'll receive a pop-up window to start the timer before you can access the test. If you're not ready to start, select Cancel. The test auto-submits when time is up.

    Late work

    After the due date has passed and you open a test, you’re alerted that your submission will be marked late. You can view the alert in the Details & Information panel and on the test page. In the Details & Information panel, you can also see if any submissions are or will be late.

    On the test page, you can also see that you made a late submission.

    More on multiple attempts grades


    ULTRA: Take a test

    Doesn't seem familiar? Jump to the "Original" help about taking tests.

    View the details. In the right panel, view all the information you need to complete a test, including the due date, maximum score, and time limit and rubric details if your instructor added them.

    Type or choose your answers. You can use the functions in the editor to format the text and embed images and attach files.

    To use your keyboard to jump to the editor toolbar, press ALT + F10. On a Mac, press Fn + ALT + F10. Use the arrow keys to select an option, such as a numbered list.

    View files. Your instructor may attach files that you need to complete a test.

    More on viewing attached files

    Add to the conversation. If your instructor enabled conversations, select the Open class conversation icon. Anyone can make a contribution to the test conversation, including your instructor.

    More on test conversations

    Add additional content. At the end of a test, you can add text and files that support your answers, or add comments for your instructor.

    More on adding additional content

    Not ready to submit? Select Save and Close to save your work and continue later. Your answers are saved on the page. When you return, you can resume working. However, if your instructor added a time limit, the test auto-submits when time is up.

    Submit your test. Finished? Select Submit when you're ready for your instructor to grade your work. You can see your score immediately if all questions are auto-graded. When you submit, a panel appears with the date and time you made the submission. Your submission is labeled Pending if it requires instructor grading. Select anywhere in the Grading section of the Details & Information panel to review your submission.

    If your instructor allowed multiple attempts and you submit an attempt past the due date, the attempt is marked late. Any attempts you submit before the due date aren't marked late.

    If your instructor allowed one attempt, you can't edit your work after you submit.

    Add additional content

    At the end of a test, select Add Content to access the editor. You can add text and files that support your answers. Your instructor may ask you to provide a file with sources. You can also add comments about the test. Only your instructor can view the content you add.

    Edit your content

    After you add content, access the menu and select Edit to make changes or add more content.

    You can edit settings for the files you've added. Select a file in the editor and then select the Edit Attachment icon in the row of editor functions. 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.

    Reorder your text and files

    Point to a text block or a file to access the Move icon. Press and drag the text block or file to a new location.

    You can use your keyboard to move an item.

    1. Tab to an item's Move icon.
    2. Press Enter to activate move mode.
    3. Use the arrow keys to choose a location.
    4. Press Enter to drop the item in the new location.

    ULTRA: View attached files

    Your instructor may attach files that you need to read or use to complete a test. Your instructor decides how files will appear, such as inline or as attachments.

    For video and audio files that appear inline, select the title to open them in new windows. You have controls for play, pause, and volume control. For video files, you can view the video in full screen. You can also download the file.

    For media files that appear as attachments, select the More options icon to access the menu. Select Download File to open image files in a new window or tab, or download Word documents, PDFs, or slide presentations to your computer. The View File option opens the file on the course page, such as an image.

    For image files that appear inline, you can select an image to view it separately.


    ULTRA: View the rubric

    Doesn't seem familiar? Jump to the "Original" help about viewing rubrics.

    If your instructor added a rubric for grading to a test, you can view it before you open the test and after you start the attempt. Select This item is graded with a rubric to view the rubric.

    If you want, you can view the rubric alongside the test instructions. You can expand each rubric criterion to view the achievement levels and organize your efforts to meet the requirements of the graded work.


    ULTRA: Be part of the conversation

    If your instructor enabled class conversations, you can discuss the test with your instructor and your classmates while the test is available. You can contribute to the conversation before, during, and after the test. As the conversation develops, it appears only with the relevant test. Conversations don't appear on the discussions page.

    A purple circle appears with the conversation icon to indicate new activity. When you open a conversation, new messages appear with a New icon so you can quickly view unread conversation posts.

    To view the conversation, select Conversation in the test's menu on the Course Content page. Or, select the Open class conversation icon in the upper-right corner of the test page or the submissions page. Your instructor can read what you and other students have written and add to the conversation.

    You can use the functions in the editor to format the text.

    To use your keyboard to jump to the editor toolbar, press ALT + F10. On a Mac, press Fn + ALT + F10. Use the arrow keys to select an option, such as a numbered list.

    You can't edit your contribution, but you can select the Delete icon to remove your contribution. If necessary, your instructor can remove anyone's contributions.


    ULTRA: Timed tests

    Your instructor may limit the amount of time you have to submit your test. If you have a time limit, it appears alongside other test details on the Course Content page. You'll also see the time limit on the test's Details & Information panel and within the test as you’re working.

    When you select Start attempt, you'll receive a pop-up window to start the timer before you can access the test. If you're not ready to start, select Cancel.

    If your instructor allows you to submit multiple attempts, the time limit applies to each attempt.

    The timer keeps running whether or not you're actively working on the test. If you save a draft or leave the test window, the countdown continues and your work is saved and submitted when time is up. When you select Save and Close to return to the test later, you're reminded that the timer will continue.

    The timer appears at the bottom of the window to let you know how much time is left. Your work is saved and submitted automatically when time is up.


    ULTRA: Grades and feedback

    Doesn't seem familiar? Jump to the "Original" help about grades and feedback for tests.

    You can see your score immediately if all questions are auto-graded. However, your instructor must manually grade some question types such as Essays, and then post the test grade and feedback.

    When grades are posted, you'll find them in your activity stream. Select View your grade to display your grade. If your instructor added feedback, you'll see it after the test title.

    More on the activity stream

    Your grades also appear on the global and course grades pages.

    More on accessing grades

    You can also access the test in your course to review your grade and feedback in context. Select the test title on the Course Content page and the Details & Information panel opens. Select anywhere in the Grading section to review what you submitted, available correct answers, and your grade and feedback. If your instructor left feedback, select the speech bubble icon to view it.

    For questions where you chose from more than answer, you can select Show other options to review the answer choices.

    The grade pill color for each question and the total test grade are based on the grading schema your instructor chose. For example, the colors map to the default grading schema in this way:

    • > 90% = green
    • 89–80% = yellow/green
    • 79–70% = yellow
    • 69–60% = orange
    • 59–50% = red

    If your instructor needs to grade questions in your test, Pending appears in the Grading section.


    ULTRA: Multiple attempts grades

    If your instructor allows, you can make more than one submission for a test. Your instructor chooses how to calculate your grade for multiple submissions:

    • Average of all attempts
    • First graded attempt
    • Last graded attempt
    • Highest graded attempt
    • Lowest graded attempt

    In the test’s Details & Information panel, you can view your current grade and the calculation method. Select your grade to view details and review your submissions.

    In the Submission panel, you can see which attempts have grades and feedback. Select the attempt you want to view. Your submission opens, and you can view your grade and how it was calculated. You can review your work and expand the Feedback panel if your instructor left comments. A message appears if your instructor has overridden the test's final grade.

    If you submitted after the due date, a late alert appears in the Submission panel and on the test page.

    You can also see how many attempts you have on the Course Grades page. You can see which attempts you submitted before the due date and if any submissions are or will be late.

    More on the Course Grades page


    ULTRA: View annotated files

    You can add files at the end of your tests for your instructors to view. Your instructor can also create a test with no questions and ask you to upload a file to fulfill the test. For example, instead of a traditional final test with Multiple Choice questions, you may be asked to upload an essay you've worked on. Or, you may be asked to upload the research you've compiled.

    These file types open directly within the browser and your instructors can annotate them:

    • Microsoft® Word (DOC, DOCX)
    • Microsoft® PowerPoint® (PPT, PPTX)
    • Microsoft® Excel® (XLS, XLSX)
    • PDF

    Instructors can view other document types in the browser, such as images and videos, but they can’t annotate them.

    If your file doesn't open automatically in the browser, your institution hasn't turned on inline viewing.

    Point to a comment icon to view comments your instructor provided. Select highlighted text to see if your instructor provided a comment. You can also zoom in and out, and navigate to other pages in your file.

    Select the More options icon to access the menu and select Hide File or Download File. You can also download and print the file from the menu in the inline viewer. Annotations won’t appear in the downloaded or printed file.