September 2023

Quizzes – Quiz Timing Improvements featuring Synchronous Quiz | Updated

This release updates the Quiz Creation experience for instructors and learners by adding a new synchronous quiz option.

With this release, instructors can facilitate quizzes where learners take their attempts simultaneously, which is convenient for in-class sessions. The new addition of synchronous quizzes enables instructors to set up a quiz where the quiz timer starts on the start date for all learners rather than when the learner launches the quiz (asynchronous). The quiz timer then ends for all learners at the same time.

To set up a synchronous quiz:

  1. From a quiz page, expand the Timing & Display area.
  2. Click Timer Settings.
  3. In the Timing dialog, under Quiz Start, select Synchronous: Timer starts on the start date.
  4. Click OK.

The Timing & Display area expanded in a quiz page with the Timer Settings button and Timing dialog. The Synchronous: Timer starts on the start date option selected under Quiz Start.

Figure: Set up a synchronous quiz.

Note: If no start date and time is set for the synchronous quiz, the No Start date set alert appears under the selected option, and you cannot save the quiz. The Due Date option is disabled for synchronous quizzes.

To ensure that learners are aware of upcoming synchronous quizzes, instructors should create instructional or manual solutions:

  • Make a synchronous quiz visible in the calendar:
    • Instructors can select Add availability dates to Calendar or set up an event showing the whole time.
    • Instructors should use the Start Date parameter when setting up a synchronous quiz and leave the End Date field empty.
  • Create an announcement with information about the synchronous quiz.
  • Set up an event and give a link to the quiz to provide more context.

Instructors must modify or review quizzes one by one to avoid accidentally modifying quiz availability dates for synchronous quizzes.

A synchronous quiz starts at the Start Date and ends when the time limit has lapsed, regardless of any action taken by the learner. For example, if a learner clicks Start Quiz! 15 minutes after the start date on a 1-hour quiz, they only have 45 minutes left to complete it. To indicate when a quiz becomes available, learners have a countdown timer on the Quiz Information and Start Quiz pages. The Start Quiz! button becomes available when the start date and time is reached.

A countdown timer on the Start Quiz page with the disabled Start Quiz! button

Figure: A countdown timer on the Start Quiz page.

Instructors can provide learners with information about a synchronous quiz before it starts. Learners can access this information in the Quiz Information page.

FYI for those wondering where the ‘Grace Period’ feature went in quizzes:

As of the September 2023 update, there is no longer a grace period associated with the quiz tool.

More on this:

The grace period was there more for when students needed to save their questions.  Now that the questions are automatically saved (as of 2018), it’s not needed.

You can add extra time to the quiz if you like – this would accomplish a grace period if you really needed one.

There are timer warnings now though at the following stages, which improves upon not having to do a grace period calculation:

  • 1 minute remaining on the quiz
  • 5 minutes remaining (only available on quizzes with 10 minutes or longer quiz time limit)
  • Half of the elapsed time (only available on quizzes with 20 minutes or longer quiz time limit)

Assignments – Annotation Tool Fixes | Updated

We have updated the third party tool PSPDFKit to the latest version. This third party tool is used by the Annotations tool in Assignments. This update resolves several Annotation tool defects reported as a result of PSPDFKit being out of date. For more information about the 01827916, 01823213, 01829403, 01765283, 01700710, and 01760906 issues, which have been resolved by this update, refer to our Known issues and Fixed issues lists on Brightspace Community.

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