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Assessment Tool

The Assessment activity allows sequence authors to create a series of questions with a high degree flexibility in total weighting. In future revisions, the tool will interface with a 'question bank' allowing the author to automatically create randomised questions for learners.Learners can re-attempt the assessment if they fail, and the tool allows for the customisation of penalties for each successive re-try.

This animation describes how to create and use the Assessment activity.


Assessment Activity Authoring

All properties sheets contain two tabs:

  • The Basic tab controls the content of the activity.
  • The Advanced tab controls how the activity behaves.

Basic tab for the Assessment Activity

Allow learners to see grades at the end of each attempt

View of the Assessment Activity Basic tab.

There are two features on the basic tab common to all activities:

  • Title: All Activities have a web page title which is presented at the top of the activity page when displayed in the Learning Environment. This is NOT the same title as the Title that can be set using the Properties Inspector.
  • Instructions: All Activities have a text area that is presented beneath the title. This is where the main activity text to be displayed to learners is entered. The text can be formatted using the Rich-Text Editor. Image, Video, Audio and URL content can also be displayed in the Instructions area.

Specific Features for the Assessment Activity

For the text-entry fields in each question type, you can use the full features of the HTML Editor toolbar.

There are several fields common to all question types in the assessment tool.

  • Question Name: provides a reference point for the question.
  • Question Text: specifies the actual question to answer.
  • Default Question Grade: specifies the 'value' or 'weighting' of a question. By default, this is set to 1.
    Penalty Factor: This is applied to the final result for each incorrect attempt a learner makes at the question. Note that you need to enable retries for the penalty factor to be relevant.
    For example, if the learner gets a correct response on their second attempt, the final mark will be 0.9 out of 1 (with the default values).
  • General Feedback: General Feedback is shown to all learners regardless of their response. If you choose to use this field, best practice is to explain what the question was asking for or what knowledge was being targeted by the question.
  • Overall Feedback: These fields allow authors to give targeted feedback for Correct, Partially Correct and Incorrect responses. Use of Overall Feedback can can assist learners who got the question wrong to better understand their results, encourage partially correct students, and reward Correct students.
  • Answer required: This option require a student to answer the question (cannot leave it blank). 
Multiple Choice

This question type presents learners with a question and several possible answers.

  • One or Multiple Answers?: Specific to Multiple Choice, this either allows learners to select one or several responses respectively from the answers to the question. The final mark for each question will be averaged from the responses selected.
  • Shuffle the choices?: This option allows to display each time a different order choices.
  • Answer Field: Specifies the available choices to choose from. You can use the full extent of the HTML Editor toolbar for the answers.
  • Grade: You can choose variable grades for each choice (score).
    • In cases where one response is 'correct', select 100% for that question and None for all others.
    • In the case where learners need to select two correct responses out of five, each correct response should be 50% of the total value. You can give each answer a different percentage, but make sure that at the end the sum of all adds up to 100%.
    • To add a new choice to the question, click the button + Add Blank Option
Matching Pairs

This question type presents learners with two lists, which they have to align in the correct sets.

  • Shuffle the Choices?: When enabled, this option randomises the order in which the pair choices are displayed.
  • Question Field: This field contains the initial or 'static' list for pairing. You can use the full extent of the HTML Editor to insert text, sounds, images or video.
  • Answer Field: This is the 'matching' list, which presents to the learners as a drop-down menu. Only text entry is allowed.
    To add a new pair to the question, click the button + Add Blank Matching Pair
Short Answer

This question type allows learners to write a short response to a question. Their response is then searched for specific words or phrases to create the final question mark.

  • Case Sensitivity: defines whether or not the case of student responses is counted in the search. By default, case is not important.
  • Answer Field: defines the text to search for in the learner's response to the question.
  • Grade: each word or phrase can be given a different grade.
  • Feedback: feedback for each word or phrase can be given independently.
    To add additional answers to the question, click the button + Add Blank Answer

The Numerical question type is ideal for mathematics based questions, as it allows learners to submit a number as their answer, as well as customise the acceptable error rate for each response.

  • Answer Field: defines the base answer for the question. (eg, 245)
    • Accepted error: defines how far either side of the base answer will be counted as correct. (eg, if error rate is 2, then correct answers will be accepted as 243 - 247)
    • Grade: different grades can be assigned to different answers.
      To add additional answers to the question, click the button + Add Blank Answer
    • Units: specifies how unit suffixes affect the learners responses.
      • *Multiplier: *If the question, for example was for measurement, then m (for metres) would be the first unit with a 1.0  and cm (centimetres) would be the second unit, with a multiplier of 0.01.
        In this case, 10m and 1,000cm would be treated as the same response.

To add additional units to the question, click the button + Add Blank Unit


The True or False question type presents learners with a statement that must be classified as either true or false.

  • Correct Answer: specifies either 'True' or 'False' as the correct answer.
    Authors can also give targeted feedback to learners based on their chosen response.

The essay question type requires learners to submit an extended text-based response to a question.
The essay must then be reviewed and graded by a sequence monitor.

  • Allow learners to use rich text editor: Learners can respond in a full HTML Editor (allows text formatting).
  • Maximum number of words: Specifies the maximum number of words that are allowed in the student's essay response.
  • Minimum number of words: Specifies the minimum number of words that are allowed in the student's essay response.

The ordering question type presents learners with a list of possible answers which they must move into an ordered state.
The answers are entered in the authoring environment in the 'ordered' state, and are then shuffled by the assessment tool for presentation to learners.

Advanced tab for the Assessment Activity

View of the Assessment Activity Advanced tab.

  • Use leaders from Select Leader tool:  This option must be used only if there's a Leader activity before this activity.
  • Time Limit: Specifies how long learners can spend on the activity. Learners must click to start the timer, and the assessment is auto submitted once the time has elapsed.
  • Questions per page: Determines how the questions are displayed on the page. This is useful when having long exams with many questions.
    All questions can be displayed at once, or between 10 and 1 per page.
  • Shuffle Questions: Randomises the order in which questions are displayed.
  • Enable questions’ numbering: displays a numbering order for each question in sequential order.
  • Attempts Allowed: Determines the number of times a learner can re-take the quiz. Options range from 1 to 6 and Unlimited.
  • Assessment passing mark: The passing score required that a student needs to get in order to complete this activity. If the learner doesn't reach the score, he/she needs to reattempt the questions until it, at least, matches this minimal score to continue to other activities in the lesson.
  • Display all questions and answers once the learner finishes: When enabled, allows to select the following options:
    • Allow learners to see question feedback after each question: This feature presents the learner with the overall feedback for the question once they have completed the assessment.
    • Indicate choice(s) that have been answered correctly: Presents students with  (tick)  for each response in the assessment.
    • Indicate choice(s) that have been answered incorrectly: Presents students with (error)  for each response in the assessment.
    • Allow learners to see history of responses at the end of each attempt: Displays all of the learners previous responses each time they complete an assessment. 
  • Display overall feedback at the end of each attempt:  Presents learners with feedback relevant to their response. This type of feedback is only available on certain question types.
  • Allow learners to see grades at the end of each attempt: When enabled, this feature displays the learners total grade mark for the assessment after each attempt.
  • Enable confidence level: For each questions, it asks students how confident they are with their chosen answer. 
  • Notify teacher after student completes attempt: Emails monitors whenever a learner completes an assessment.
    ( This option requires an SMTP server to be configured for LAMS. Contact your System Administrator for details.)
  • Add a notebook at end of Assessment with the following instructions: When enabled, a teacher is able to ask a learner for feedback about the activity. This is an opportunity for the teachers to get the learners to reflect on activity they have just completed.

Overall Feedback Section

This area allows authors to give different feedback for different levels of achievement.

For example, learners who achieve 100% may receive one message, while learners who score between 50% and 99% will get another.

  • Add Feedback Field: Adds another feedback range for comment.
    See the screenshot at left for a an exemplar. The section at the bottom of the screen shows different messages for different achievement levels.

Learner tip!

(tick) Finish test or Submit All?
You should make clear to your learners the difference between clicking Finish Test and Submit All.
Clicking Submit All allows learners to see which questions they have incorrect, and gives them an opportunity to correct those responses and Resubmit the assessment.
Finish Test submits all of the learner's responses as Final, and does not allow them to revise their assessment.

Monitoring Assessment

Summary Screen

View of the Assessment Monitoring Summary tab.

The Summary page allows monitors to view responses and scores on the assessment. Statistics can be compared as an entire set, on a per-user basis, or a per-question basis.

The Assessment activity displays data using the same toolkit as the new Gradebook feature.

Click on a learners name to sort by that learner.

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Click for larger view.

Sorting by learner shows the individual responses for each question.

Choosing a question from the Report by Question drop down gives this new window, showing all the responses to the question.

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Click for larger view.

You can export and save a spreadsheet version of the Assessment Summary by clicking Export Summary.

Edit Activity

Clicking the Edit Activity button opens a new screen identical to the 'Basic' tab in the authoring environment. Edit Activity allows modifications to be made to the Assessment activity while the lesson is being run.


These are important implications for changing questions on ongoing assessments:

Note that if you change a question that already has been taken by a learner, the score given to the learner for the question you change will be reset to zero.
If you delete a question in which a learner was awarded a mark, this mark will be remove from his/her overall score.
If you add a new question, as the learner wouldn't have seen it and therefore didn't answer, it will be given a zero mark for it.

Unlike Live Edit, this form of Editing can only modify the content of an activity, as opposed to the structure of a sequence.


The Assessment Statistics screen displays a list of all learners who have attempted the assessment and their total mark for the activity.