How to add automatically graded questions to your digital assignments - Video guide

Whether you give students a digital assignment, homework, or a test, the most important aspect is the questions.

So, how can you create interactive questions when teaching digitally or remotely? How can you keep your students motivated when teaching online? And how can you configure those questions to be automatically graded and save you hours of grading time afterwards? In this blog post, you’ll get all the answers to the questions mentioned above. I’ll guide you through 30 different question types, and show you how exactly you can add them to your digital assignments.

As you know (or now know), you can use BookWidgets for creating these interactive exercises and digital assignments. You can also use BookWidgets to create digital worksheets and quizzes that are automatically graded. If you haven’t started yet, you can create an account for free, right here:

If you’re new to BookWidgets, check out this video webinar for beginners to get started.

30+ interactive question types explained

BookWidgets has multiple digital activity formats, or “widgets”. To create an assignment with several questions, you have to create a Quiz, Worksheet, or Split Worksheet widget, and add your questions. For the right configuration and settings of your digital assignment, check out this step-by-step quiz tutorial.

In the rest of this blog post, I will explain how to add different question types to your assignment, and how you can make them automatically graded. Check out this self-checking worksheet, and follow along to read about the details of each question type.

I added all the videos on the BookWidgets YouTube channel in this playlist.

1. Text question

Not really a question type, but certainly important when you want to inform your students or add media resources to your assignment. Use this question type to write a text, assignment, or introduction. Add an audio fragment, video, image, or embed another webpage so students can answer questions about the media resources.

2. Text multiple choice question

The multiple choice question is probably one of the most used question types in education history. Why? Easy to set up, review, and in most apps also easy to automatically grade. Add a normal multiple choice question and optionally add an image or (immediately record) an audio file.

You can also choose to randomnize the answer possibilities for your students.

3. Text multiple choice/ multiple answers question

This is very similar to a multiple choice question. There’s one difference, though: students can tick off multiple right answers, not just one. When using this question type in BookWidgets, you have the same extra options (add image, audio, and randomize the answer possibilities) as the multiple choice question.

4. Single line text question

Ask your students a question which they can answer in just a single line or with one word. Just like with the other question types we’ve seen already, you can add audio and images as well to make things more visual and interactive.

As a teacher, you choose whether to ask an open question or a closed question. When posing a closed question, you can fill out the correct answer in the BookWidgets question editor, so the question can be automatically graded.

If it’s an open question, make sure to add an answer expectation or explanation to the questions’ “Rationale”. When students receive feedback, they will immediately see the rationale or explanation you added to this question.

5. Multi line text question

Apart from being able to answer with multiple lines, this question type is just the same as the previous one. Students can answer this question in a few lines, and write down a longer text if they want to.

As it’s an open answer question, this question is not automatically graded, BUT there are some tricks to minimize your grading work:

  • Add keywords with grades: If the keywords appear in your students’ answers, they will get grades for it.
  • Add a “Rationale” so students can receive immediate feedback with the explanation or the expected answer. When you let students submit their work, you only have to add a grade. When you return the work, students will also see the “Rationale” you’ve added before.

6. Rich text question

Instead of writing plain text, students can use formatting in their answers: they can choose to put words in bold, italic, or underline them; they can highlight words by changing their color to red, blue, or green; they can add bullet- and numeric lists, indent lines, and choose between different alignments.This helps them learn to structure their answers.

Just like the multi line text question, this is an open answer question, and so it’s not possible to automatically grade it. However, if you make sure to add a “Rationale” to your question, you can still save time when grading and giving feedback.

7. Fill-in-the-blanks question

In a Fill-in-the-blanks question, you leave words from your question, and let the students fill it in. This question type can be used to complete a sentence, to translate words, to find the terms of given definitions, to write down arithmetic solutions, …

To make it easier, you can even give your students a dropdown menu with words to choose from.

8. Mark sentence question

Let students mark words in different colors. First, you indicate the different categories, then your students can mark the words in the colors of the indicated categories. Check out the video to see how you can make this question type automatically graded.

9. Correct words in sentence question

With this question type, teachers can set up sentences with mistakes in them. Students have to find the wrong words and correct them. Think about wrongly spelled words, words that don’t belong in a sentence or words with the wrong meaning.

10. Drag words in sentence question

This looks a lot like a fill-in-the-blanks question, but is a bit easier for your students, as you give them already the words to use on top of the text. All the words appear random, and you can even add “distractor” extra words that don’t belong anywhere, making it a bit harder for your student.

Students just pick a word from your list, and drag it to the right blank space in the sentence.

11. Fill-in-the-table question

More of a “numbers” teacher? Then you should definitely take a look at this question type. Create your own tables, and choose when students have to fill in numbers and if they have to be automatically graded or not. You can let students can fill in numbers, different currencies, and percentages. Or, let them fill out words in the table, such as in the video example below. As a teacher, you can even change the layout of the table!

12. Question table question

Here, you can give students different questions or statements that they have to grade or answer. As a teacher, you choose what the answer possibilities are. Here, every statement or question has the same possible answers, and students just have to indicate the right one. It can be true/false answers, yes/no, or numbers. You can even add other words as well.

13. Question table with multiple answers question

This is actually the same question as mentioned above, with just one tiny difference. Here, students can tick of multiple correct answers. In the “question table” question above, students can just choose one right answer.

14. Annotate picture question

This question type allows you to insert a background image, on which you can add fields that students have to fill in. With a creative mind and a good image, you can do beautiful things!

15. Whiteboard question

For this question type, students have to answer your question on a whiteboard. For example, ask your students to draw something or to write down their learning process. In physics, let your students draw lines that indicate certain forces. You can even add background images on which students have to indicate things. Think about a blank map of Europe to which students have to color certain countries.

Ask your students to upload their own image and indicate things on it, or add “stickers” that they can put on top of the whiteboard to help them form their answer.

16. Photo question

Nowadays, students almost all have smartphones or tablets with a camera on them. Ask a question and let students answer by taking the right picture. They can also just upload a photo that’s saved on their device. I bet you don’t have a question type like this on your paper worksheets.

When going on a field trip, this question type does the trick. Let them take pictures of historical buildings or selfies before them as proof that they visited that place. In science projects, students can add pictures of the experiment’s evolvement.

17. Word ordering question

When you’re teaching your students to write complete sentences, they have to know the words’ correct order. This is the perfect question type to reach that goal! You can also ask them to put words in alphabetical order or the right chronological order.

You can even ask your students to orde complete sentences.

18. Picture ordering question

Let students order pictures in the correct order. This is a more visual and interactive question type. No inspiration? Here’s what you can do with this question type:

  • Let students order images from different stages in a life cycle.
  • Let students order images from different stages of an experiment or project.

There are many steps, processes and evolutions students have to learn.

19. Picture multiple choice question

This question type works the same as an ordinary multiple-choice question. The only difference is that students answer by ticking off the right image instead of text.

20. Picture multi select question

When your question has multiple right visual answers, use this question type, and let your students tick off more than one image.

21. Audio Recording question

When you want your students to answer your question with their voice instead of typing text down, this question type is perfect. Let them hit the record button and record their voice. Of course, for this to work, your students need a device with a microphone, and a relatively recent web browser. Ordinary desktops computers may not have a built-in microphone.

22. Word Match question

Use this question type when students have to match definitions with terms, foreign vocabulary with the correct translation, opposites, synonyms, arithmetics with the solution, countries, and capitals, and so on.

There’s only so much learning material to match and connect!

23. Word - Picture Match question

Let students find the right connections between words and images, and let them match words with pictures by connecting the dots. Use images when possible to make the assignment more visual. It’s the very similar to the previous word match questions, but when you can spice up your assignments, you should definitely opt for this one.

For example, let students match translations with the correct image, mathematical solutions with an image of an area that needs to be calculated, capitals with images of countries, and so on.

24. Picture - Picture Match question

Of course, it’s also possible to use this question type when you want your students to match two images with each other instead of text.

25. Audio - Word Match question

For listening exercises, you can ask your students to match an audio fragment with their translation, a word, a sentence, or an explanation. Students just click on the audio icon and the audio starts playing. Now they need to find the right match.

As a teacher, you can upload an audio fragment from your device, Google Drive, or immediately record one in BookWidgets with your own voice.

26. Audio - Picture Match question

Let students match an audio fragment with the right image. Students just have to click on the audio icon to listen to the audio fragment behind it.

27. Text Drag & Drop question

Give your students words or sentences to choose from. Add different fields with different themes or names to which students have to drag and drop the words.

A lot of teaching subjects can be divided into certain groups. This question type lets you do that. The students just have to find out which word belongs to which group.

Think, for example, about the grammar lessons in languages. Here, students could have to drag strong and weak verbs to the right field.

28. Text Drag & Drop question - Part 2

We’re still talking about the same question type where students need to drag and drop text in the right place. In the first configuration video, you can see how you can create this question type with minimal efforts.

Check out this video below to see how you can use this question type so students can drag and drop text on a background image. This explanation uses more settings and takes a bit longer, but the result is worth it! Make sure to check out the video!

29. Picture Drag & Drop question

Another drag and drop question type, only students now have to drag and drop images into certain fields instead of words.

Check out part 2 to see how you can change the settings to make a more visual and sophisticated question.

30. Picture Drag & Drop question - Part 2

You can also let studets drag and drop images on top of a background image. Learn how to use different settings so you can create a beautiful question type that is so much fun for your students.

31. Group items question

If “having favorite question types” is a thing, this is definitely it for me. It can’t get more interactive than this question.

Create different groups of items that belong together. Think about a word or a name, an explanation, an image, and an audio fragment. BookWidgets will randomize all the groups and items of the groups. Students see all the items apart from each other. Now they have to drag and drop the matching items on top of each other to create the different groups.

Check out the video to see how it works.

32. Rated multiple choice question

This question type is used mostly to create personality tests or other tests where students have to point out their opinion or feelings. Here, every answer has a different score value. At the end of the test, students get a grade. Along with the certain grade comes a description or explanation of “what kind of person you are”.

33. Numeric answer question

This question type makes it easier for students to type in fractions or exponents, which is hard to do using a keyboard.

34. Equations question

This math and science question type is pretty new. BookWidgets added this one so your students can solve math and science questions using symbols that aren’t on their keyboard. Ask your question, add a solution (so it can be automatically graded) and students will get a formula editor that will show the detected symbols. This way, students aren’t limited by the symbols on their keyboard.

As a teacher, you can also choose what symbols you want to show your students. Go to “general” > “Equation Editor” and choose when what symbols should be showed to students.

I’ve made a longer video for this question type to show you a few of possibilities.

35. Balance chemical equation question

Here you can choose between 3 types of chemical questions where students have to balance the equation.

Let them:

  • fill out the products table and indicate if it’s balanced
  • complete the reactants, product tables, and indicate if it’s balanced
  • balance the equation

36. Iconic compound builder

Let students combine ions to form a molecule. Configure the question by providing the name and the chemical formula of the molecule. Optionally restrict the ions the student can use.

Automatic grading

So, what happens after you made your BookWidgets assignment? First, you share it with your students by giving them the widget link or by sharing the “widget” or digital assignment in Google Classroom, Microsoft Teams, Schoology, Moodle, Canvas, …

When you enabled students to submit their work to you, go to the “Grades and reporting” tab in BookWidgets. You’ll see the work appear there.

Check out this BookWidgets tutorial on how to review student work, give feedback, and change grades (if necessary).

When finished, return the work to the students. They’ll receive a PDF of their work, with the correct answers and grades.

Wrap up

I hope you now know how to configure every question in BookWidgets. I’m sure all these questions are enough to transform your paper worksheets to digital ones.

Add automatically graded questions to your digital assignments

Lucie Renard

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