Introduction for Activity Authors

With the Exercises template, instructors can create online exercises designed to reinforce students' understanding of various grammar points, vocabulary, and contextual cues while developing their reading, writing, and aural comprehension skills. Individual Exercises activities can include four possible types of questions: multiple choice (including true or false), short answer/essay, matching, and fill-in-the-blank (including cloze). Questions may incorporate various media-text, image, audio, and video. Exercise authors control configuration options such as whether students are shown feedback for each questions, whether they may repeat the exercise, whether they are shown hints, and whether they may see their scores and/or the correct answers. Exercises may therefore be used as homework drills, individualized, extra practice, self-quizzes, or even graded online exams.

The Exercises Template has three separate “views”: Authoring, Learner, and Grader view. The Authoring view contains a Question Bank, where questions are stored. Authors then assemble Exercises activities by building them out of questions from the bank and organizing them into sections. They may select from the bank previously written questions or create questions as they are authoring activities, in which case the new question will also be stored in the bank for later use. Authors even have the option of using questions written by others, if they have been granted access to them. The list of questions in the bank can be filtered to help authors find suitable questions to include in their Exercises activities.

In the Learner View, students may answer different types of questions and receive hints, correct responses, and feedback from the activity author and/or grader. The exercise might be set up such that students have to submit their answers by a particular date in order to be scored. If students are allowed multiple attempts on an exercise, then they may retake the exercise again before the deadline to submit answers.

The Grader view, for viewing and scoring students' responses, may be accessed by the activity's original author or by a designated grader. Graders can view and score student responses by viewing the entire exercise, one student at a time; or by viewing all students' responses for each question. The grade-book feature mimics a spreadsheet displaying columns and rows of information-students' names, the date and time stamp of that particular attempt (if there has been more than one attempt, all attempts are listed), and students' results for individual sections and questions. Graders can look at the most recent submissions, final tries only, point values, all question types, and/or all sections. Graders can also leave individualized comments for students that they will receive the next time they log in.



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