Allow your students to choose which questions they answer in an online test in OAKS

I’ve been asked, on a few occasions, “How can I make an OAKS test where the students can choose say 5 out of 8 questions to answer?”  And I have to admin, this stumped me!  However, I will not be beaten and I think I’ve found the answer.


screenshot of quiz edit with question 6-8 marked as bonusHere’s the scenario:

  1. You want your students to answer 5 out of 8 essay test questions.
  2. Each question is worth 20 points.
  3. Total test value of 100 points.

What you will do is give a point value to all the questions of 20 points but you will make the last three questions a bonus.  This way, you have an 8 question OAKS test that only adds up to 100 points.  I know this seems confusing but trust me, it works.


 Student Perspective

The students don’t know which questions are bonus so it won’t make a difference to them when they take the quiz but there is one thing to make them aware of. They are only answering 5 out of 8 in our scenario, so when they submit their test they will get a message that they haven’t answered all of the questions. This may freak some people out. Error message: Warning you have 3 unanswered questions Just tell them, in advance, that they will get this error and to ignore it.  As long as they have answered the specified number of questions they will be fine.  At this point, they should click Submit Quiz.



From a grading perspective, nothing has really changed.  Regardless of whether it is a Bonus question or not, the grades will count.  


If a student only answers 4 questions instead of 5, you MUST mark a “0” on one of the NON-BONUS questions so they are penalized for not answering.  If you mark a “0” on a BONUS question, they will not be penalized.

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