Review the Good Practice for Examinations Online guidance prior to setting up and using Moodle Quiz

The Quiz activity allows you to design and build quizzes consisting of a large variety of question types, including multiple choice, true-false, and short answer questions. Questions are kept in the Question Bank and can be re-used in quizzes in different modules. Moodle quizzes can help to build students’ confidence by providing opportunities for them to consolidate their learning, and offering instant personalised feedback. Lecturers can also benefit from using quizzes to identify parts of the curriculum that students are struggling with, and to gather feedback about content covered in lectures. If you are adopting a flipped approach you can use Quiz to develop warm up questions which require students to answer a few simple questions prior to lecturers to prepare them to develop more complex answers in groups during face-to-face sessions.

Create a quiz activity

Create a Quiz activity

Creating a quiz in Moodle is a three stage process:

  1. Firstly you set up a Quiz, initially as just an empty 'container' with various general settings.
  2. Next, you create questions in a Question Bank.
  3. Finally, you add questions from the bank to the quiz. You can reuse questions in the Question Bank in quizzes across your modules. Please be aware of Copyright issues when creating content for Quizzes.

To add a Quiz, Turn editing on

Setting Description
Add quiz
  • In the relevant section/topic, choose Quiz from the Activity list.

General settings

Adding a new Quiz

  • Give the quiz a meaningful Name.
  • In the Description, explain clearly what the students have to do, any pre-quiz requirements and so on. Note you can use the Editor to add links and images if necessary. If you wish this description to appear on the main module page, click the check box.
  • You then need to choose a number of settings as described below. Once you have updated all the selected settings, click Save and display to start adding questions.

Quiz Settings



Opening and closing the quiz

Opening and closing the quiz

If you wish the students to complete the Quiz during a particular time period, tick the Enable box next to the relevant option and set the relevant dates and times in Open the Quiz and Close the Quiz.

Default: Disabled

Time limit

Time limit

Set a Time limit for the quiz if desired. Ensure you tick the Enable box first. 

The Quiz close time takes priority over the timer. This means that if you have set your Quiz to be open for an hour between 10-11am and apply a 60 minute timer, that students won't have a full 60 minutes to complete the Quiz as they will lose some time opening the Quiz and accepting the timer confirmation.

When time expires

When time expires

This setting controls what happens if the student fails to submit their quiz attempt before the time limit expires. This setting defaults to Open attempts are submitted automatically. This ensures that students' attempts are not stuck in a never submitted state and left ungraded. If you are rolling over Quiz activities, please ensure that you select the setting Open attempts are submitted automatically for timed quizzes.

Other options within this setting are:

  •  Attempts must be submitted before time expires, or they are not counted. This setting means that if students do not select the Submit button prior to the timer running out that their Quiz will remain in a never submitted state and cannot be graded or
  • There is a grace period when open attempts can be submitted, but not more questions answered. This enables the student to go to the summary page and click the submit button. If they submit within the grace period, their attempt is counted.

Submission grace period

Submission grace period

If a grace period is given, you need to set how long it will be under Submission grace period.



Grade category

Grade category

If grade categories have been set up within the Grades area in the module, you can choose which category the quiz should appear in using the Grade category option.

Default: Uncategorised

Grade to pass

Grade to pass

This setting allows the minimum grade required to pass to be added. The value is used in activity and course completion, and in the gradebook, where pass grades are highlighted in green and fail grades in red.

Attempts allowed

Attempts allowed

Choose how many attempts at the quiz students are allowed with the Attempts allowed option.

Default: Unlimited

Grading method

Grading Method

If the student is allowed more than one attempt, you need to choose how the attempt will be graded with the Grading options setting. You can choose to use the highest grade, the average grade, first attempt or last attempt.

Default: Highest grade


Setting Description

New page


For longer quizzes, it makes sense to stretch the quiz over several pages by limiting the number of questions per page. When adding questions to the quiz, page breaks will automatically be inserted according to this setting. However, page breaks may later be moved manually on the quiz editing page.

Default: Every question

Navigation method

Navigation Method

[Select 'Show more' to see this option] Navigation method can be set either to Free or Sequential. Free navigation allows the student to skip forwards and backwards in the quiz. Sequential forces them to attempt the questions sequentially without being able to go back to a previous question or skip to a later one.

Default: Free

Question behaviour


Shuffle within questions

Question Behaviour

Shuffle within questions - allows the parts making up each question to be randomly shuffled each time a student attempts the quiz, provided the option is also enabled in the question settings. This setting only applies to questions that have multiple parts, such as multiple choice or matching questions.

Default: Yes

How questions behave

How Questions Behave

How questions behave - various options area available but the two most commonly used are:

  • Deferred feedback mode where the students enter an answer to each question and then submit the entire quiz before anything is graded or they get any feedback.
  • Interactive with multiple tries - allows students to submit each question as they go along to get immediate feedback, and if they do not get it right immediately, have another try for fewer marks.
  • CBM (Certainty Based Marking or Confidence Based Marking) - for questions with CBM, students do not only answer the question, but they also indicate how sure they are that they have got the question right. The grading is adjusted by the choice certainty, so that students have to reflect honestly on their own level of knowledge in order to get the best mark. For example, if a student answers a question they also have to state how sure they are of the answer: not very (less than 67%); fairly (more than 67%) or very (more than 80%). Their grading is then adjusted according to how certain they are, which means that for example if they answered correctly but were only guessing, their mark is adjusted from 1 to 0.33.
 Scoring on Certainty Based Marking

Certainty-based marking requires you to indicate how reliable you think your answer is. The available levels are:

Certainty level

C=1 (Unsure)

C=2 (Mid)

C=3 (Quite sure)

Mark if correct




Mark if wrong




Probability correct




Best marks are gained by acknowledging uncertainty. For example, if you think there is more than a 1 in 3 chance of being wrong, you should enter C=1 and avoid the risk of a negative mark.

 Why use Certainty Based Marking
  • To make you think about how reliable your answer is
  • To encourage you to try to understand the issues, not just to react immediately to a question.
  • To encourage you to think laterally: other pieces of knowledge may help to validate or question your answer.
  • To challenge you: if you won't risk losing marks if wrong, then you don't really know the answer.
  • If you are a careful thinker, but not very confident, you will gain confidence.
  • It is fairer: a thoughtful and confident correct answer deserves more marks than a lucky hunch.
  • You need to pay attention if you make confident wrong answers - to think, reflect and learn!
  • Efficient study requires that you constantly question how your ideas arise, and how reliable they are.

 From http://www.ucl.ac.uk/lapt/

 Student view with CBM

When students review their results, they will see a breakdown of their performance by certainty level:

Each attempt builds on the last

Each attempt builds on the last

[Select 'Show more' to see this option] Each attempt builds on the last - if multiple attempts are allowed and this setting is enabled, each new quiz attempt will contain the results of the previous attempt. This allows a quiz to be completed over several attempts.

Review options


Review options

Review options

These options control what information students can see when they review a quiz attempt or look at the quiz reports.

    • During the attempt settings are only relevant for some behaviours, like 'interactive with multiple tries', which may display feedback during the attempt.
    • Immediately after the attempt - settings apply for the first two minutes after 'Submit all and finish' is clicked.
    • Later, while the quiz is still open - settings apply after this, and before the quiz close date.
    • After the quiz is closed - settings apply after the quiz close date has passed. If the quiz does not have a close date, this state is never reached.

Other settings

AppearanceThese options enable you to choose whether to show the users' picture during an attempt, how many decimal places should be displayed for grades available for questions, and whether selected blocks can be shown to the student during a quiz attempt
Extra restrictions on attempts

these options allow you to set restrictions on how students access the quiz. They are not generally used.
Overall feedbackOverall feedback is text that is shown after a quiz has been attempted by specifying additional grade boundaries (as a percentage or as a number). The text shown can depend on the grade obtained.
Common module settingsThese settings refer to visibility and groups and groupings
Restrict accessThese settings enable you to release the quiz to students only when certain conditions have been met. See the Conditional Activities guidance for more details.
Activity completionThese settings allow you to track if the activity has been completed. 
The quiz can be marked as completed when a pass grade is achieved or all available attempts are used.
Provide extra-time for students

Step 1:

  • Select the Quiz activity.
  • Select the Settings on the top menu bar and choose User overrides.

User overrides

Step 2:

  • Add user override

Add User Override button

  • Select Add user override.
  • Select student(s)

    Select student(s)

  • Select the arrow in the box under Override user to reveal the list of students.
  • Select the name of the student(s)
  • Save


  • You can also override the date and the number of attempts.
  • Change the time limit allowed, then click Save
Add questions to the Quiz
 Copyright and Quiz questions

Different copyright rules apply for different resources based on the type of resource it is. Below shows 3 different resource types and the copyright rules for them.

1. Images from online resources/websites:

It depends where the image originated and what terms apply to the source, for example if taken from a website the “copyright” or “terms and conditions” section of the site in question may indicate what may and may not be done with its content.

If no terms are indicated then there wouldn’t be an allowance to re-use except for one of the following purposes:

  • Examination purposes (including assessed coursework)
  • Criticism and review: i.e. to make a critical point, as opposed to using for illustration.

2. Text quoted from online resource/website (i.e.pasted or rekeyed):

For examination purposes (including assessed coursework), there is no limit to the amount which may be used.

For purposes of criticism and review (rather than for illustrative purposes), material may be used roughly to these limits:

  • for a series of quoted extracts from different works: no single extract of more than 300 words;
  • for a series of quoted extracts from a single work: not more than 800 words.

3. Image or text scanned from book:

Any scanning (of an image or text) ought to be done via the library digitisation team.

Step 1:

  • Select Quiz.
  • Select Edit quiz.

    Edit Quiz

  • Select the Add menu on the right.
  • Three options will appear. Add:
    1. a new question
    2. from Question Bank
    3. a random question
  • If you have your question created in the bank, choose from Question Bank.
    • If you have not used the Question Bank and you want to add questions quickly, you can also use the option Add a new question from the Add menu. However, it is highly recommended to use the Question Bank and add categories in it. In that way you can reuse the questions in different quizzes and different modules in an organised way.
  • Add questions from Question Bank

    Add Qyestuibs from Question Bank

  • Select the relevant questions from the Question Bank and select Add selected question button.

Edit Quiz layout

Page breaks

  • The new question page on Moodle allows you to insert page breaks between questions.

Add page breaks


You can also repaginate your quiz, changing the amount of questions per page. Use the Repaginate button.


Section headings

  • Section headings may be added to each new page.
  • For the first page, click the 'pencil' icon at the top and add your heading. For the next pages, click the 'Add' link and choose 'a new section heading', and then add your heading.

Add section header

The order in which questions appear to the student may be randomised or 'shuffled' by ticking the 'Shuffle' box at the top of the screen.

Randomise the order questions appear

Conditional questions

  • If you are using Interactive with multiple tries or Immediate Feedback behaviour and with the navigation method set to free, you can make a question display dependent on a previous question being answered first.
  • If you want to make a question, for example Question 2, conditional upon Question 1, then select the padlock just above Question 2.

Make questions conditional upon other questions

  • When students access the Quiz, they will see a message saying that Question 2 is not available until they answer Question 1. And the navigation will show the question greyed out.

Quiz Navigation

Question settings

  • Also from this page you can move Move Cog , preview Preview, delete Delete a specific question and change its score Score.
Question types



Calculated questions

They offer a way to create individual numerical questions by the use of wildcards that are substituted with individual values when the quiz is taken.

Calculated simple questions

These are the same as the calculated question type but with a simpler interface with fewer options when setting up the question. The numbers used are selected randomly from a set when the quiz is taken.

Calculated multichoice

Calculated multiple choice questions are like multiple choice questions with the additional property that the elements to select can include formula results from numeric values that are selected randomly from a set when the quiz is taken.

Drag and drop onto image

Images or text labels are dragged and dropped into drop zones on a background image.

Drag and drop into text

Missing words in the question text are filled in using drag and drop.

Drag and drop markers

Markers are dragged and dropped onto a background image.

Embedded Answers (Cloze)

These very flexible questions consist of a passage of text (in Moodle format) that has various answers embedded within it, including multiple choice, short answers and numerical answers.

Essay questions

Essays are intended for short answers of a paragraph or two in response to a question (that may include an image). This question type must be marked manually and answers can't be downloaded for offline marking. For longer essays, Online text assignment or Upload a single file assignment are better choices.
Support can be provided for students in answering an essay type question by providing them with a Response template to help them to structure their essay answer.

Matching questions

They give a list of sub-questions, along with a list of answers. The respondent must "match" the correct answers with each question.

Maths and Science by Wiris

Wiris allows you to include maths formulas, calculations and graphics within Moodle using a WYSIWYG editor. See more in the section: Create a question using Wiris.

Multiple Choice

The respondent chooses one or more answers. Multiple choice questions allow you to set a positive or a negative grade for each answer which means students can be penalised for guessing incorrectly.


From the student perspective, a numerical question looks just like a short-answer question. The difference is that numerical answers are allowed to have an accepted error. This allows a continuous range of answers to be set.

Random short-answer matching

Similar to the matching question. The difference is that the sub-questions are drawn randomly from the Short Answer questions in the current category (can include sub-categories).

Select missing words

It allows missing words in some text to be filled in using drop-down menus.

Short Answer

It allows a respondent to type a word or phrase in response to a question (that may include an image). There may several possible correct answers, with different grades.


In response to a question (that may include an image), the respondent selects from two options: True or False.


It is not a real question. It simply prints some text (and possibly graphics) without requiring an answer. This can be used to provide some information to be used by a subsequent group of questions, for example.

More information: Types of Quiz Questions

Question bank menu
  • The Question bank menu allows to navigate to pages where you can manage questions and categories as well as import and export questions from other Moodle modules.
  • To access the Question bank Overview menu, click Settings > Question Bank.

Question bank settings

  • Clicking Questions will take you to a page where you can Manage your questions.
  • Clicking Categories will take you to a page where you can Manage your categories.
  • Import and Export are for importing and exporting questions to and from your Moodle module.

Manage categories

This feature allows you to create, preview and edit questions in a database of question categories. The categories can be limited to being used on the site, course or quiz level. The questions in a category can be added to a Quiz or to a Lesson activity via an export process. The teacher enters the Question Bank by creating or editing a quiz activity or via Settings > Question Bank.

Questions are organised into categories. Initially each course has only one category called Default.

It is good practice to create more categories to organise your questions. This not only makes it easier to find questions, but makes the use of random questions and matching question easier.

You can create a hierarchy of categories because you can create subcategories inside parent categories.

  • To add or edit categories click on Categories tab. You will go the categories page.
  • Select the parent category, enter the category name and click Add category.

Add catergory

Add a new question

The question editing screen shows the questions from the currently selected category. You choose this category from the Category: drop-down menu. Using the tick box below that menu you determine whether to also show the questions from all subcategories.

Question menu

Question options

Press Edit and you will be given the options to:

  • Edit the question
  • Duplicate the question
  • Manage tags to manage the tags for the question
  • Preview to try out and test the question
  • Delete to delete the question
  • Export as Moodle XML to export this particular question to an XML format for importing to another course.

ID number

  • You're also able to Add an ID Number to the question for easier searching. To do this, click Edit > Edit question and scroll down to the Setting which says ID Number.
  • Enter a suitable ID Number, and press Save changes.
  • Your ID number should be visible in the Questions Menu next to the Question Name.

Move a question

  • To move a question/s into a different category or subcategory, click into the box on its left; scroll down to With Selected and choose Move to and select the category you would like the question to be moved to.

Create Maths and Science questions using WIRIS

WIRIS is a set of solutions that have been added to Moodle to enhance mathematical features. Wiris empowers your questions by adding:

  • Random variables (such as polynomials, matrices, plots...).
  • Automatic evaluation of the answers.
  • Graphical representations in 2D and 3D.
  • A formula editor to introduce students' answers.
  • Syntaxcheck of the answer for open answers.
  • Open questions, such as “Introduce a real number that is not a rational” (There are infinite correct and incorrect answers).

If you would like to know more about WIRIS Quizzes, further documentation is available on the WIRIS website.

 The WIRIS editor
WIRIS Editor is a WYSIWYG formula editor designed to streamline the process of writing mathematical formulae.


This editor can be accessed from the Moodle editor, clicking on the  icon in the toolbar. If you want to modify an existing formula, select it and click on  , or just double click on it. If you don't see the wiris icon, you probably need to expand your toolbar, clicking in the icon

Wiris toolbar

Maths Editor

This is the full WIRIS toolbar, each tab offers a set of symbols and operators to write formulae.
 Question types

Question types on WIRIS are very similar to question types on Moodle. This section focuses on the specific aspects of WIRIS, for a more general description go to: Types of Quiz Questions.

Question typeTips



  • Students answer this question type by writing a text. They can insert formulae and calculations using the text editor.
  • Use this type to make questions with random wordings. Write the algorithm to define the variables you will use in the question text and the feedback. (See WIRIS variables)


  • Write the algorithm to define the variables you will use in the question text and the feedbacks.
  • Remember to define the boolean correct answer variable, or else the correct answer will always be the same.

Multiple choice


  • Write the algorithm to define the variables you will use in the question text and the feedbacks.
  • You probably want to put variables also in some or all choices.
  • NB: the grade of each choice is static, so you probably want to leave marked the Shuffle the choices? setting.



  • Embedded answers (Cloze) type is a wording with multiple questions of different types inside it.
  • There is actually no interface to make this type; you make it writing codes inside the wording.

Short answer


  • This is the most complex question type to make, because the student can answer very different expressions, and the system must still decide if they are correct.
  • That's why this question type has more tabs to configure it.



  • This question type is just like a group of Multiple choice, but less powerful on each one.
  • NB: the answers can be only plain text. 
  • You can still use variables in the answers, but their values must be texts, numbers, or simple formulas. On the other hand, questions can be anything, notably complex formulas or even plotters.
 WIRIS variables
  • With WIRIS it is possible to generate several different questions with one question, by setting random values for the variables in the problem.
  • Every time the question is displayed, it shows new data values, although the structure of the question is the same.
  • These new and random values are calculated online in real time.
  • For more information on WIRIS Variables and questions, please have a look at the WIRIS Documentation.
  • WIRIS also have a guide on CalcMe (their calculation engine).
 Examples and resources

Examples and resources: Maths and Science questions with WIRIS.

ResourceMore infoDescription

Question Bank: Stem collection

https://stemcollection.com/Wiris questions and quizzes licensed under creative commons, free to use and share.
Assessing mathematics through Moodle quizzesEstela, M.R., Saa, J., Villalonga, J. (2009) Wiris Quizzes. Assessing mathematics through Moodle quizzes. Available: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/228611529_Wiris_Quizzes_Assessing_mathematics_through_Moodle_quizzes

This paper describes the main features of WIRIS and analyses possible uses to teach and learn mathematics.

It presents some examples in the teaching of complex numbers and vectors.

WIRIS quizzes to solve electrical circuitsBorraga Rodriguez, S, Corbalan Fuentes, M., Font Piera, A., Plaza Garcia, I. Arcega Solsona, F. (2012) Lessons learned in the use of WIRIS Quizzes to upgrade moodle to solve electrical circuits. Available: http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/stamp/stamp.jsp?arnumber=6132438

The paper describes a set of activities made with WIRIS to introduce basic knowledge of the laws governing the behaviour of electrical circuits.

It also describes the research conducted with engineering students.

Additional Resources:

  1. Importing Quiz questions
  2. Groups and groupings
  3. Restrict access
  4. Text Editor