Skip to main contentSkip to breadcrumbsSkip to sub navSkip to doormat
You are here

Exams with closed-ended questions (Sample Exam)

To create a written exam with closed-ended questions, use the Sample Exam on MyLEARN.

The following types of questions and combinations of these question types are possible within the sample exam:

  • Single-Choice question
  • Multiple-Choice question
  • Cloze question with text entry or drop down field

How do I create a online exam with closed-ended questions on MyLEARN?

The following steps are necessary to create an exam with closed-ended questions:

  1. Create a Sample Exam in your online exam environment or in your study course on MyLEARN.
  2. After that, add exam questions to your sample exam.
  3. If you have finished everything, you have to release the exam questions and the sample exam.

Below, you can find step-by-step instructions for these points.

How do I create a Sample Exam?
  1. Go to your online exam environment or your course environment on MyLEARN.
  2. In the left side menu, click on "learning activities".
  3. In the top menu bar, click on "New" and "Sample Exam"
  4. Choose the following settings for a written online exam, and click on "Save" afterwards:
  • Shuffle questions > yes
  • Advanced settings > assignment
  • Hide list of questions > yes
  • Allow editing of questions > No
  • Grading mode > max. points (and: enter the points)
  • How many minutes should be available…* > (entry in minutes)
  • Starting time and end time** > date/time for start and end of written exam
  • Release grading > publish manually

*Here, students will get the information how much time is left for their exam as soon as they started the exam.
**A fixed starting and end time guarantees that students can only work on the exam at a defined day and a defined time.

How do I create exam questions in a Sample Exam?

After you have created a Sample Exam, directly after saving you are in the Sample exam. Fill the sample exam with your exam questions. 

  1. Within the Sample Exam, klick at "New" in the top menu bar
  2. You get a choice of the question types which are allowed within a sample exam. The "Combined question" allows the combination of the three question types Multiple Choice, Single Choice, and Cloze question. Since April 7th also proxy questions can be used in a Sample Exam. Choose one of the question types.
  3. Fill in the form with your question and the answer alternatives.
  4. Save your question.

Title vs. Short name

Titel: You can give the questions the same title (e.g. "question" for each question) During the exam, the title will be displayed for each question. A uniform title makes it difficult for students to identify the question easily and to exchange ideas about it.

Shortname: Vary the short name of all questions of a sample exam. It must not be the same for every question. Ideally, enter a random sequence for each question of a sample exam (e.g. 95726300278910). This name is shown to the students as part of the URL in the Browser. An arbitrary designation makes it difficult for the students to easily identify the questions and to exchange ideas about them.

Expert Tip

If you have skills in R, you can use the R package "exams.mylearn" to generate large amounts of randomized single choice and multiple choice questions. This tool was developed at the WU Institute for Statistics and Mathematics. It is an Open Source solution.

If you have further questions regarding this package, write to

Can I copy previously created exam questions into the sample exam?

If you already have created exam questions on MyLEARN, e.g. in your course, you can copy them via the clipboard and add them to the Sample Exam which you have created. A step-by-step instruction is available via the MyLEARN-Guide.

​How do I determine or change the weight of questions?

Determine the weight of each question. You can find a step-by-step instruction via the MyLEARN-Guide.

Consider assembling an exam of questions with similar weight (i.e. also similar difficulty), as students will get questions in sample exams in varying order, but cannot jump questions to, for example, answer preferentially questions with higher weight. If you need a broad variety of weights, it is better to create more sample exams and to combine them to a online exam. This allows the students to determine with which part they want to start without having a potential disadvantage.

How do I release the Sample Exam and the questions in it?

To make the sample exam and the questions in it visible for the students, you must release them first. Make sure that you have completed the entire sample exam correctly before you activate its visibility.

​You have several options to release your sample exam and the exam questions:

  1. Click the icon  next to the sample exam or the exam questions or
  2. click the gear symbol and choose "release" in the drop down list or
  3. choose the desired learning activities via checkbox   and click at  the drop down list „Selected“ and choose „Release“.

​How do students get to the online exam?

Students see the online exam on their To Do list on MyLEARN. If they click at the exam before the starting time, they get the following notification: "You will be able to complete this activity between [Start date and time] and [end date and time]“. Only at the start date, students can start the exam.

How does the online exam for students look like?

From the determined start time, students can start the online exam.

  • Before the start, students see the following standard text:
    "For this task you can reach up to [number] points. Completion time: [start date and time] - [end date and time].

    You have a time limit of XXX minutes to complete this task. As soon as you click on ''Start'', the timer starts to run.
    You will also see your start time, the remaining time and the time up to which the task has to be submitted (expiry of the time limit).
    To submit the task, click on the ''submit'' button within the specified time.
    Answers that you submit outside the time limit will be discarded and will be counted as 'not answered'."

  • If editing of answers was allowed:
    In this exam answers are saved as a draft and you can edit them again. If you do not click on 'Submit' in due time these drafts will be submitted automatically after the time limit has expired.

  • If editing of answers was not allowed:
    In this assignment answers are not saved as a draft and you cannot edit them again. If you click 'Next' your answer will be submitted immediately.

  • With a click on "Start", students start their exam and receive the exam questions in a sequenced order.
  • With "Next“, students can navigate to the next question.

No back navigation

If you selected "Alllow editing of questions: no", students cannot go back to a question. When starting the Sample Exam they will receive the following information: "In this exam it is not allowed to re edit a question again." Therefore, it is important that students choose answers for each question. If they do not choose an answer, the choice will be empty - and there is no way to change this.

Students cannot go back using their web browser, either. If they click on "back" by mistake, they mus use the "Go forward" arrow of their browser to return to the exam question and to continue working on the exam.

How can I see the submissions of the students and grade them?

After having carried out the online exam, you can view the submissions of the students.

  1. In the left side menu, click on "learning activities".
  2. In the top menu, click on "learning activities", again, and choose form the drop down list "Assignment Overview".
  3. In the "Assignment title" column, search for the sample exam of which you want to view the submissions.
  4. For this assignment, click on the number for "Submitted" in the "Submission status" column.

You see a table of all submissions and the grading.

How can I grade student submissions?

The grading of closed-ended questions is done automatically. However, it is recommended to check the grading again - especially for Cloze questions with text entry. You can overwrite the automatically calculated grades:

  1. In the "Submission" column, click on the "Submission" link to view detailed information about student submissions.
  2. Overwrite, if necessary, an assessment, by clicking on the automatically calculated number of points in the field "of [number] points".

How can I release students' grades?

If you want to use the gradebook of the exam course directly, e.g. for a subsequent export of the grades to BACH, you must publish the grades in the exam course beforehand. To do this, click on the "Publish all grades" button. After publishing the grades of a Sample Exam students will see the following when clicking on the Sample Exam in the course:

  • Total score
  • Obtained points for each question
  • When clicking on the questions: the submitted answers and the correct answers

After publishing the grades of a Sample Exam, the grades can also be added to the gradebook as partial credit from assignments. Students can then see their points achieved in the gradebook of the exam course.

Export the grades for a later import to BACH by clicking on “Actions” and “Export gradebook data.” Select as format “Grades (Bach). This requires that a grade scale has been created in the gradebook (cf. Gradebook).


Do not publish the grade in case you don’t want your students to see the grading in the exam course. You can also choose to export the grades straight from the "Submission status" column if you plan on only realeasing the grades in other courses.