The Moodle quiz allows instructors to create a graded set of questions for students to answer in Moodle. It’s a very versatile tool that can be employed for a variety of teaching purposes, from low-stakes check-ins to exams. 

The following is intended to provide tips and points of information for Amherst faculty. Please see Moodle.org for full technical documentation

Related Links & Information:


Why use the Moodle Quiz?  ♦  Getting Started   ♦  Quiz Settings & Tips  ♦  Adding Extended Time & Other Accommodations for Specific Students   ♦  Time Limits: A Universal Approach   ♦  Reviewing Essay Question Attempts    ♦    High Stakes Quizzes or Exams: Let Us Help!

Why use the Moodle Quiz?

  • The quiz can auto-grade most question types.  
  • The quiz settings allow you to create different types of assessments. For a formative, low-stakes, assessment, a quiz can allow multiple attempts and give feedback on why answers were right or wrong. For summative assessments, you have the option for more restrictions on attempts and timing, as well as deferred feedback. 
  • See our article  “Quizzes for Self-Regulated Learning” for an example of how one Amherst faculty member used quizzes in her course.
  • The essay question can accept file uploads from students, which can work well if you need to combine a specific time limit with longer-form writing or a set of essay questions.
  • When not to use a Quiz: If students are just uploading files, and/or you don’t actually need the auto-grading or time limit features, we suggest using the Moodle Assignment instead. 

Getting Started

Quiz Settings & Tips

  • When first creating or editing the settings of your quiz, here are some items to look for:
    • If you are using a time limit or closing the quiz at a certain time, be sure to set “When time expires” to “Open attempts are submitted automatically”. This will save whatever the student has answered so far, and will prevent their losing work.
    • In the Grade, section, “Attempts allowed” defaults to “Unlimited”. This is nice for formative assessments, but you may want to restrict this for official quizzes and exams.  
  • Adding page breaks, especially between essay questions, is highly recommended as Moodle will save a draft of the student's work when they click to the next page.

Adding Extended Time & Other Accommodations for Specific Students

  • If you are using a time limit and need to grant extended time to certain students, you can set User Overrides to provide this. You can also use this feature to provide additional attempts or even different open/close times to certain students. 
  • To get to the User Overrides screen, click the link for the quiz and then click the settings gear icon at top right. 
    user overrides

Time Limits: A Universal Approach

In the context of remote teaching during the COVID-19 crisis, faculty have shared with us the strategies they are currently using:

  • In the interest of Universal Design for Learning, many faculty are opting to only use time-based restrictions (eg the quiz must be completed in 60 minutes) when it is crucial to the learning goals for their course. 
  • An untimed quiz holds many universal benefits, such as eliminating the need for extended-time accommodations, and providing more flexibility for students who may have technical or internet issues. 
  • Since online learning is new to Amherst faculty and students alike, building in as much flexibility as possible will give everyone a better chance for success. 
  • For more information on designing for flexibility and allowing for student choice & agency during this unique time, please see this excellent resource from the Center for Teaching & Learning.  

Reviewing Essay Question Attempts

  • New for Fall 2020: Faculty can download all student essay question submissions at once. This will include any files uploaded by students to the essay question. When viewing the quiz, look for the settings gear and click "Download essay submissions". 
    download all essay responses
  • To view and grade all responses to one question on a single screen, in the Settings menu shown above select "Manual grading".

High Stakes Quizzes or Exams: Let Us Help!

  • If you plan to use a Moodle quiz for a high-stakes assessment such as an exam, we are more than happy to take a look at your quiz and its settings ahead of time. 
  • Quiz settings in Moodle can be complicated, and we can help make sure the quiz will work how you and the students expect. Don’t hesitate to reach out, just email askIT@amherst.edu.