FAQs - Exams & Quizes
Issue Description Students are unable to complete an exam due to time outs or configurations issues or, kicked out of an assessment when the submit button is pressed.
Cause The java session has been terminated due to inactivity, and so the submission is unsuccessful. Almost always this issue occurs with randomized tests, or where certain questions are randomized.
WorkaroundFOR INSTRUCTORS There are a number of different ways to combat this problem.
- Give the exam one question at a time. This ensures that the user's java session is continuously updated, and the likelihood of a user not hitting the system to persist his/her session is reduced.
- Students should SAVE answer every 5 minutes or so, especially when answering an essay question. This resets the timer for the exam (default of 90 minutes).
- Turning off the "force completion" option. Doing this allows the user to persist his/her answers. In case of any issues with the session timing out, the user will be able to re-enter the exam from the last point he/she saved, allowing them to submit the exam with minimal data loss.
- Using a reliable WIRED connection. Wireless connections can sometimes drop, yet this is not apparent to the student. It appears that answers are being saved, and in reality, they are not because the connection to the server has been dropped.
- Not using randomized tests (*ONLY FOR USE IF THE PREVIOUS TWO WORKAROUNDS ARE UNUSABLE). While this is most likely an unusable workaround, the reason randomization is a problem is that each version of the exam in a randomized test is created in java memory only. So, a randomized test, should the java session for the user die, will not persist anywhere, and will be unrecoverable. Removing randomization will use a version of the test from the database, so at least the user would get the same test with the same order the next time he/she took the test.
1. Avoid randomizing answer responses WITHIN questions when pool is greater than 200 (done within question key itself).
2. Keep question pools to under 200, i.e. use more pools, not bigger pools -- this also makes test development easier and question bank maintenance easier in many ways for the course developer (moving questions between pools is difficult).
3. If creating a test with approximately over 150 questions, do not use the Randomize Question Order setting in the Test Options.
4. If delivering test questions one-at-a-time, do not randomize question order in Test Options (regardless of number of questions).
help desk / Instructional Support Services to ensure your exam will run smoothly. There are monthly downtimes scheduled for servicing and updating software which may or may not coincide with your scheduled exam.