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Create an Item and Question on an Advanced Assessment
Create an Item and Question on an Advanced Assessment

Learn how to build items and questions in an Advanced Assessment.

Monica Burke avatar
Written by Monica Burke
Updated over a week ago

Before You Begin

Is this your first time creating an Advanced Assessment? If so, you'll want to check out our Beginners Guide to Advanced Assessments if you haven't already. Advanced Assessments are our most powerful and intricate assessment tool, and it will be helpful to know the basics before you begin to create one! Once you've taken a look at that guide, come on back here and get started!

Advanced Assessments are our most powerful assessment type, with over 60 available questions and the ability to have multiple questions presented at once. Items and questions are the building blocks of Advanced Assessments, while features are the "extras" you can add (like audio players and calculators). Once you have created your Advanced Assessment shell, it's time to begin creating items!

Example Advanced Assessment Item:

The Big Idea:

  • Items are the containers that hold your questions.

  • Items can have multiple questions and/or features in them.

More information on items, questions, and features can be found here.

Create the Item

  • Step 1: Select the blue Create button.

  • Step 2: Give the item a title. This will be the name that shows in your list of My Items.

💡Tip: it is helpful to establish a naming convention for your items, so you can easily identify them. For example, Subject_Unit_Question# is a common naming convention.

Add Questions

Many times, an item only contains one question. In the case that you want multiple questions related to the same topic, you can add multiple questions and features to the same item.

❗ Are you linking standards to your items? If so, please note that you are not able to attach different standards to individual questions. The standard(s) you attach to the item will apply to ALL questions in the item. If you have questions that don't relate to the same standard(s), you will want to put them in different items.

Add Questions

  • Step 1: After you've titled your item, select the + button to add a question.

  • Step 2: Choose from one of the categories of questions available on the left. Then choose the specific question type you'd like to add.

  • Step 3: Create your question (example shown is Multiple Choice) and determine the scoring methods. Information on how to set up the scoring for your question can be found in the article written specifically for that question type. A list of those articles can be found here.

  • Step 3.5: We recommend saving your work as often as possible, especially if you are working on a detailed item. Now would be a good time to select Save! The first time you hit save, you will be taken back to your My Items list; that's ok! Just click on the item again to keep working.

  • Step 4: Link standards to the question by select Link Standards (optional). Please note that you are not able to attach different standards to individual questions. The standard(s) you attach to the item will apply to ALL questions in the item. If you have questions that don't relate to the same standard(s), you will want to put them in different items.

  • Step 5: Add additional questions or features (see below) as needed.

  • Step 6: Preview your item. Selecting Preview will allow you to see the item as the students will see it. It also allows you to answer the question to verify the scoring has been set up correctly.

  • Step 7: Save your item.

❗ Important Note

  • Make sure that all of your questions have correct answers set (except for open-ended questions). This is especially important if you have more than one question in an item. If you fail to identify a correct answer for one of your questions, it will cause scoring issues for all questions in that item. It is extremely important that you confirm that any question to be auto-scored has a correct answer!

Add Features (optional)

What Are Features?

Features are used to enhance your assessments; they can appear in Items alongside questions, or they can appear on their own. Features are created using the Question Editor, in the same way that Questions are created.

  • Step 1: Select the gray + symbol.

  • Step 2: Select the Features tab from the top-left corner.

Link Standards

While in your item, select Link Standards. Choose the standard(s) you'd like to add.

💡 Tip: Keep in mind the standard(s) you attach to the item will apply to ALL questions in the item. If you have questions that don't relate to the same standard(s), you will want to put them in different items.

Item Layouts

There are many layout options for items in Advanced Assessments.

  • Columns: Items can have a single column or two-column layout. These can be found in the Settings option when building your item.

  • Tabs: You can also use "tabs", which allows for pagination of the content within the item (see Example 3 below)

  • Dividers: Vertical dividers are also an option.

Take a look at the examples of various layouts below:

Example 1

Columns: 30 | 70 Tabs: No Divider: Yes

Example 2

Columns: 60 | 40 Tabs: No Divider: No

Example 3

Columns: 50 | 50 Tabs: Yes Divider: No

Add the Item to the Assessment

Once you've built your item, select Save. If this is the initial creation of the item, the item will automatically add to the assessment.

If you need to add an item that has already been built to an assessment, follow the directions below:

  • Step 1: Find the item in your Item Bank

  • Step 2: Select the item.

  • Step 3: Select Add in the upper-right corner.

Item Scoring

Each question in an item has its own scoring method, meaning, you can determine the scoring for each individual question in the item while you are building the question. To learn more about how to set up the scoring for each question, check out the article written for that specific question. You can find a list of those articles here.

In addition to individual question scoring, you can also determine how the item is scored as a whole. For more information, check out this resource.

Auto-Score Settings

This only applies to advanced assessments that utilize Standards Based Grading Scales (Non-Points). With this feature, you have the ability to set the default score a student receives for auto-graded questions. Adjusting auto-scoring settings will take place on the Assigning page.

  • This feature is assessment wide, not per individual question. This means that the level selected for Correct Answer and Incorrect Answer will be applied to all questions within the assessment.

  • A question is considered "correct" if ALL portions of the individual question are correct. Mid-level scale labels will not apply to partial correct answers. Questions are considered fully Correct or Incorrect.

Example: If partial credit is being applied and a student gets 3 out of 5 parts correct, they will be given the status of "Incorrect Answer".

💡Tip: If you edit this setting after the assessment has been assigned, you will receive a message explaining that this only applies to future scores, not scores already collected.

FAQ and Troubleshooting

Click to see FAQ and Troubleshooting Details

Can I attach more than one standard per item?

Yes. You can link multiple standards to an item. Keep in mind, though, that those standards apply to all questions within the item. There is not a way to assign different standards to different questions that are in the same item.

How do I duplicate an item?

Select the arrow to the right of the blue Save button while building the item, then select Duplicate. For more information, click here.

Can I duplicate a question within an item?

No; you can duplicate the item as a whole, but you are not able to duplicate or clone an individual question within an item.

How do I rearrange the order of the items on the assessment?

Use the up/down arrows to the right of the question while viewing the assessment builder.

Can I use the same item on multiple assessments?

Yes. Keep in mind, though, that if you make edits to the item, those edits will appear on any assessment that item is used in (since it is the same item)

How do I make a two-column layout?

From the Settings menu, select one of the options for a two-column layout.

How do I add a passage?

Select Passage from the list of available features. Click here for more information on how to add and use passages with Advanced Assessments.

Can I put a passage and questions side-by-side?

Yes. Learn how to do that here.

How do I change the font size or font style of the questions in the item?

You can change the font size two ways. You can use the size selector while building the question, or you can scroll down to the More Options section and select a font size under Layout. To see more details on how this is done, reference the article written for the specific question you are building.

How do I add question numbers?

Manually type the question number into the question while building. Questions are not automatically numbered.

What does the Duplicate Items not allowed alert mean?

It means that the exact item you're adding has already been added to the assessment. The item may not be immediately visible, you may need to scroll up or down in the question list to see it.

Can I reuse items from my Item Bank in another assessment?

Yes! Any item you build in an Advanced Assessment is added to your Item Bank. You can then use that same item again in a new assessment. Two tips to help with this:

  • Use a clear naming convention for the titles of your items so they’re easy to find. For example, Subject_Unit_Question# is a common naming convention.

  • If you want to reuse several items from one assessment again, it might save time to clone the entire assessment. In the clone, you can remove any items you don’t need, or add any new ones. To clone an assessment:

    • Step 1: Navigate to your Assessments Drafts.

    • Step 2: Select the ellipsis on the right of the assessment title row.

    • Step 3: Select Clone.

How to set “all” answers as correct answers on an Advanced Assessment

If you want to give students credit for any attempt at an answer, there are a couple of different options, depending on the question type.

  • In many items, there is a “Minimum score if attempted” field in the More options section. Enter a value of 1 or more (not zero) to automatically award students with a score for even attempting the question

  • Some items have an “Unscored/Practice Usage” checkbox in the More options section. Enable this to remove any point value.

  • If the response options are limited, add an Alternate Answer for each response and award full credit to each alternate.

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