This week I ran two sessions to introduce the VIULearn Quiz tool to those who may never have used it, or may be wondering what else they can use it for. This session walked through the key settings and fields in the tool from creating a question to grading a quiz.

There were lots of fantastic questions asked in these sessions. Below is a recording of the main session content. I have also captured many of the questions that came up in these sessions and some answers for those questions.

What is the best way my students can ask me questions during an exam?

It is a great idea to set up a channel for students to get in touch if they have technical problems, or any questions when taking an online test. Online testing can be stressful and having a set way to get in touch and a timeline for how quickly they can expect to reach you can help reduce some of the anxiety.

There are several ways you can encourage students to get in touch. The three below are all options available to you using VIU supported tools, but if you have another method (such as giving students a phone number they can call) that you are comfortable with, you are by no means limited to these options.

  1. Set up a Zoom meeting that runs the duration of the exam period which students can join if they need to ask you a question. To prevent multiple students from joining at the same time, you can enable the Waiting Room feature.
  2. Set up a Discussion area in VIULearn where students can post their questions. This can either be a group topic with single user named groups, or a moderated topic where all posts are invisible to students unless you choose to release them.
  3. Ask students to email you and set an expectation for email turnaround times.

How do students using Speech to Text software use the Quiz tool?

Student who rely on assisting Speech to Text software will need to speak their answer for written questions into a program like Google docs or and then copy and paste their answer into your quiz.

Make sure you do not disable right click on your quiz if you think any of your students require assistive technology, or arrange an alternate assessment for those students.

Do images in Quizzes have Alt Text for students who rely on assistive technology?

Yes. Images in the Quiz tool will prompt you to enter alternative text to describe your image for those who rely on screen readers.  Here are some tips on writing effective alternative text.

Can I add diagrams to a quiz?

Yes. You can use the Insert Image button on the floating HTML tool bar when entering your question text in order to add an image. Images can be uploaded from your computer, or selected from existing course files.

How do I resize images in a quiz?

By default, images added to VIULearn are sized to 100%. This means the image width fills the full space available to it. To resize an image in a Quiz:

  1. Click on the image
  2. Once selected, you will see white squares appear in each corner of the image. Left click and drag on one of these squares to quickly shrink your image.

You can also edit the size of the image in the HTML source editor:

  1. Click the four outward pointing arrows in the floating HTML editor to change to full screen editing.
  2. Click on </>
  3. Change the “max-width:100%”  to the new maximum width you want to allow
  4. Click Okay to save

Can I add a PDF or Word Document to my question?

Yes. You can insert a file such as a word document or PDF into a question. This file can be uploaded from your computer or from your course files. When students click on the link to that file the file will download automatically to their computer and they can then open and view that file.

Can students open a reading in one window and answer the questions in another?

Students can have multiple pages open when taking a quiz. If you have a longer reading you want students to view, you may want to add this to Content or provide a download link so students can open the file beside the quiz and not have to scroll back and forth between reading and looking at the next question.

Can I export existing questions to the Question Library?

Yes. You can add questions that are in a quiz and are not already in your Question Library to your question library:

  1. Go to the Question Library tab in the Quiz tool
  2. Click the grey Import button
  3. Select Browse Existing Questions
  4. A side bar will open. You can use the Source drop down menu to choose which quiz you want to import questions from.
  5. Check the box next to any question you want to import and click Add
  6. You will need to repeat this for each quiz you want to import questions from.

Can I share my question library or quiz with others?

Yes you can. There are two options for sharing any content with another VIU instructor in VIULearn: you can export a zipped package containing the material you want to share, or you can add them to your course as an instructor and they can copy the content directly into their course. Please note, if you add another instructor to your course, they can see and do everything you can within your course.

Can I print student exams for offline marking?

It is possible to print student attempts. You can find steps for exporting student work, including Quiz attempts here.

If you are looking for an alternate way to grade student work, the Grading screen allows you to grade entire attempts or grade all student responses to a single question at a time. You can grade a single question by:

  1. Open the quiz tool (Assessment > Quizzes in the course navigation bar)
  2. Click the arrow next to the quiz title and choose Grade
  3. Click on the Questions tab.
  4. Click on the question you want to grade
  5. You will be presented with each students’ answer for that specific question.  

Could Zoom be used instead of (or alongside) VIULearn for testing?

Zoom can be a great tool for oral exams. If you want to have students explain their understanding of a concept or demonstrate their thinking, you could schedule short Zoom meetings to take the place of face to face meetings.

Can I enter equations?

Yes. There are equation editors available on the floating HTML bar to help you enter equations into your questions. This page has some additional information from D2L about the equation editor.

Is there a calculator I can enable?

No. Unfortunately, there is not a built in calculator in VIULearn. Students can use their own calculators, or Google has a scientific calculator students can open by googling Calculator

Is there a limit to the number of questions you can include in a quiz?

There is no limit to how many questions can be added to a quiz or question pool. However, longer quizzes do not reliably give you more information about what students know, so you will want to balance the number of questions against student stress levels and the number of skills or knowledge pieces you need to evaluate.

Is there a word limit for Written Response questions?

No. There is no character limit or word limit for Written Response questions. You can choose the size of box to display for students to give them a visual clue about how much writing you are expecting, but there is no option to restrict how much they can enter.

If I have a matching question with 10 matches, and I make the question worth 5 marks, will it automatically weight each response at 0.5 marks?

There are three options for distributing the points on Matching, Ordering, and Multi-Select questions. Equally weighted will automatically share your points across all items. All or Nothing will give students 0 points for the question unless they get all components correct. Right Minus Wrong will subtract marks for incorrect answers .

Have more questions?

Please send any questions or support requests to

Thank you!