Skip to main content

Tagged: ,

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 35 total)
  • Author
  • #1136
    Tyson Hedrick

    Hi all,

    Here’s a recap of my experience trying to use the Sakai “Tests and Quizzes” assessment tool for a timed exam for 70 students.

    Quick summary: If I use Sakai as an assessment platform again I’ll do the following:
    1) Avoid using the “Question per page” format, this didn’t work for many students, probably due to weak internet connections on their side and/or problems with Sakai scalability
    2) Provide a long “Late submissions” window to make sure students can get their exam submitted

    I setup my exam as 50 questions randomly drawn a pool of 50 questions (i.e the same 50 questions for all students, but in random order) with one question shown at a time, but allowing students to go back to earlier questions. I tested this exam in with the preview function and I provided the students with a 10-question practice exam with identical settings so they could get used to the process. The preview worked fine and no one reported difficulties with the practice exam, so I setup the exam to begin at 11am today and waited.

    Within minutes of the exam start I received emails from approximately 15 students reporting that A) questions were taking minutes to load and that B) Sakai was repeatedly showing them the same question even after they clicked the “Next” button to move on – similar to what was reported by Megan Plenge on 3/30. Sakai was sluggish but usable for me during this time, and I quickly copied the duplicated the exam, changed the settings of the duplicate to load all questions on a single page and directed students with technical problems to that alternative test. This worked, but at the end of the exam many students reported difficulty with submission such as timeouts after clicking the submit button. This happened with both the original and alternative exams. I thought I had configured Sakai to auto-submit all saved student work at the end of the exam period with the “Autosubmit saved student work after latest acceptance date” Settings option, but that didn’t work and many students were left with unsubmitted exams. I again edited the exam settings to allow late submissions and directed all students without submitted exams to re-enter Sakai and try again. This eventually allowed almost everyone to get the exam in.

    As a final note, providing extended test time to select students for the ARS accommodations worked fine.

    Ty Hedrick

    Thao Nghi Tu

    Hello Ty,

    Thanks so much for sharing your experience with using the Sakai Tests & Quizzes tool! Creating a practice exam for students who may not have used this tool before was a great idea to help them feel more comfortable with taking the exam. I am sorry to hear that some students experienced problems and hope I can provide some clarification as to what may have happened.

    Several users reported connectivity problems today that ITS Networking confirmed were due to Spectrum, the internet provider. Our team also checked speed tests and confirmed those of us who were experiencing slowness were on Spectrum. The slowness was seen on multiple websites, including Sakai,, etc. Those of us with a different internet provider at home were experiencing normal speeds. It would be interesting to hear back from your students whether they’re using Spectrum at home or a different provider. I imagine most of their issues were related to Spectrum today and/or other connectivity problems (bandwidth, multiple users online, etc.). Was your practice exam available for students before today?

    The problem that some of your students experienced with the same question appearing I imagine also had to do with connectivity issues. What Megan Plenge reported on 3/30 was actually related to several question pools with few questions, so students were receiving some of the same questions or very similar questions on their second attempt of an exam. We confirmed the randomization of questions was working on multiple attempts of an assessment.

    Please note our script to push through auto-submissions runs daily around midnight, so you may not see students’ in-progress submissions until the next day. If you would like any to be submitted before then, just send us a request on and we can manually push them through.

    You’re welcome to share with your students the Sakai tips found on our blog, including a list of tips on taking tests online.

    Feel free to continue sharing any other feedback you may have on here and whether you give the Tests & Quizzes tool another run. Hopefully things will go smoother for you and your students. If you have a technical question specific to your course, please send us a request on

    Thank you!

    Thao Nghi Tu

    Hi Jan,

    The recommended method for giving TAs access is by adding them to the official course roster in ConnectCarolina. This is so they are required to take FERPA training before getting access to student private information. You can however also grant them grading permissions through the Section Info tool in Sakai. We strongly encourage the TA to take the FERPA training either way. Here is a tutorial with more information and steps on setting this up. Granting permission through Section Info will give the TA access to view student submissions and grade in all areas of your Sakai course site.


    Jan Hannig

    To I understand this correctly that if I add a student on Connect Carolina they will be automatically added to Sakai with correct permissions set to grade?

    Thao Nghi Tu

    Hi Jan,

    If a student is added to the course roster in ConnectCarolina with the Teaching Assistant role, the student must first pass the FERPA training. I believe they are then added to an instructor table in ConnectCarolina, and then the departmental course scheduler may add them as a TA to the course roster. Once Sakai updates (happens 3 times daily), the TA would automatically inherit grading permissions in the Sakai site. Here is info on FERPA training from the University Registrar.

    Troy Blackburn

    For some reason (no doubt my screw up!) students are unable to see feedback on an online quiz they recently completed. Any assistance is greatly appreciated.


    Thao Nghi Tu

    Hi Troy,

    Here is some information on making feedback available to students. Be sure to edit the copy of the assessment in the Published Copies tab since this is the version released to students. Also note that we recommend never selecting “Immediate Feedback” as this is available to students as soon as they take the test.

    Tutorial on grading and feedback options
    How students view feedback
    Blog post on providing feedback (includes screenshot of what students see)

    Troy Blackburn

    If I choose to provide exam feedback on a specified date in Sakai, is the feedback only available for that date, or does it remain available to students? I want to be able to discuss the results via Zoom, but I also want to minimize students’ opportunities to copy the exam and pass it along to future students. If feedback is continually available after the specified date, can I change the feedback setting to “no feedback” once I’ve discussed the exam in class to prevent continued access to the questions and answers?

    Thanks for your help.


    Thao Nghi Tu

    Hi Troy,

    The feedback will remain available to students starting on that date and time. Yes, you can go back and switch the feedback setting to “No feedback” after you have discussed the exam in class. Just be sure to modify the version in the Published Copies tab.

    Troy Blackburn

    I have a student who missed a class session during which we covered feedback from a recent exam. I made the feedback available to all students during the class Zoom session but then took it down afterward to reduce the likelihood of students copying the exam material. Is it possible for me to share Sakai feedback with a single student for a specified period of time, but not give the rest of the class access? Thanks!


    Andy Brawn

    Hello Troy,

    The settings for a test released to a group or the entire class do not allow for a feedback release to be pinpointed to a single student. It’s to everyone within the release or no one. I see three options for you. You can export the exam to a spreadsheet. Edit out the other students and their results and make the resulting file available to the student in question via the secure drop box tool. This option does not prevent the student from downloading the file. The second option would be to set up office hours with the student so that you can screen share with the student. You would, of course, need to be careful not to reveal any of the other students’ scores. Finally, you can release the feedback again during a limited time period and just let it be known to that student. I realize this idea has the element of risk that you were hoping avoid.


    Pello Huesa


    We created a couple of quizzes and accidentally used “Immediate Feedback” (I think this is the default option).

    Sakai automatically created two new columns in our Gradebook.

    We want to keep the quizzes, and student answers, but we want to delete those columns from the Gradebook.

    We don’t see how to delete the columns in the Gradebook.

    How should we proceed in order to keep the Quiz submissions and delete the Gradebook columns?


    Thao Nghi Tu

    Hi Pello,

    By default, no feedback is available to students, however you can change the feedback setting at any point. Please note the “Immediate Feedback” option means students can see the feedback immediately, so while they are taking the quiz. We highly recommend selecting either “Feedback on Submission” or “Feedback will be displayed to the student on a specific date” (after due date for example). In the Set advanced feedback options, you can choose what to make available to students in the feedback. Assessments are also sent to the Gradebook by default, but this can be changed in the settings at any point as well. Please follow these steps in the Tests & Quizzes tool to make changes:

    1) Select Published Copies tab
    2) Select Action menu for assessment > Settings
    3) Select “Grading and Feedback” tab
    4) To remove the quizzes from the Gradebook, uncheck the Gradebook Option: Send assessment score to Gradebook immediately, regardless of options below
    5) To modify when feedback is displayed to students within the Tests & Quizzes tool, select Feedback on submission or on a specific date and select date/time
    6) Save

    Here is a tutorial on modifying your Settings. If you have any questions specific to your course site, please submit a help request and a Sakai admin can take a closer look at your site. Thanks!

    Ryan Thornburg

    I’m working with Lessons in Sakai for the first time, hoping to use it to be for students both a single source for our class schedule and all the material they will need for a course that will have both synchronous and asynchronous sessions.

    Does anyone have a good example of a course site that effective uses the Lesson tool that they would be willing to share as an example?

    Paul Wolff

    @Ryan – if you set up a consultation on the Keep Teaching site, one of our instructional designers can meet with you and share a Lesson template! We can also show you some courses currently using that template and walk you through how to use the tool effectively.

Viewing 15 posts - 16 through 30 (of 35 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.