Today is a pretty exciting day from a LearnDash update perspective.
It’s the day that you all get one of the most requested features in the history of our WordPress LMS.
You can read all of the juicy details further down in this announcement, but if you’re not one for waiting: this update contains the new essay (“open answer”) question type!
But we also threw in one other extra feature that you may enjoy among various “behind the scenes” enhancements.
Essay/Open Answer Questions
In this version (2.2), you now have the option to administer essay (free form text) questions in your quizzes, giving you a total of 8 possible question types available in LearnDash.
When you are adding questions to your quiz, simply select the new question type:
An essay can either be a submitted (uploaded) document, or a free text entry as shown in the options below:
The final (but most important) setting for your essays is how they are to be graded at the immediate completion of the quiz.
You will see the following options via a drop-down menu:
Using this drop-down, you can determine whether you want to allow the user to continue in the course, or wait until you have officially scored the quiz.
Below is a description of what you can expect from each selection:
- Not Graded, No Points Awarded – The essay question is submitted and awaiting grading. Final quiz grade presented to learner is displayed as “Pending”.
- Not Graded, Full Points Awarded – Essay status is “Not Graded”, but full points are awarded. You can filter by “Not Graded” essays to grade them at a later date.
- Graded, Full Points Awarded – Essay status is “Graded” and full points are awarded.
IMPORTANT: If no points are awarded for the essay, this (temporarily) counts against the final score. If the total points obtained from the other questions meets the passing threshold, the user can continue with the course. However, if they do not earn enough points to meet the passing threshold then they will not be able to continue.
Certificates will not be awarded if the quiz essay question is still in a NOT GRADED status, even if certificate threshold is met.
When an essay is complete for a quiz, you can find it under QUIZZES > SUBMITTED ESSAYS
You can filter by status (Graded versus Not Graded), as well as the course and lesson of the essay.
Click EDIT to review the submission. If an upload was required for the essay, this is where you can download the file.
This is also where you can award points and place the essay into a GRADED status.
If you previously set the grading of the essay to Not Graded, No Points Awarded, then the status and grade of the quiz will no longer be in Pending status after you award points and indicate that the essay is graded.
If the user did not meet the passing threshold prior to grading but after grading of the essay they meet the threshold, then they will be permitted to continue with the course.
Points For Assignments
Previously when assignments are submitted they can only be put into an “Approved” status.
Now you have the option to allocate points (grade) assignments that are submitted. Simply open up a submitted assignment and you’ll see a field where you can give a certain amount of points:
Just as before, if the assignment is set to auto-approve then the user can continue to the next lesson after assignment submission.
If auto-approve is not selected, then you have to approve the assignment first (and award the applicable number of points). This can be done from the ASSIGNMENTS menu.
Select the assignment and click EDIT. Here you can award points and update the status of the submission:
The awarded points will show for the user on the lesson where they originally uploaded the assignment.
The ability to assign points to an assignment will open new possibilities for add-ons (some of which are already in the works! 🙂 ) and future core development.
We also would love to hear scenarios on how you’d like to utilize assignment points – so please do let us know!
All of these great features are available today. If you don’t see this from your admin dashboard, please reference this support article for some guidance on updating.
The Evolution Continues
First, let me say that we are far from done with updates to LearnDash for this year.
- Yes, you will receive more core enhancements
- Yes, you will receive access to more add-ons
The reason we continue our rigorous pace for updates and improvements is because the elearning industry as a whole never slows down. We are also constantly learning from you, our customers, as you share with us your ideas and suggestions.
But in addition to short-term goals, we are also in it for “the long game” as we plot out new avenues and opportunities for you to leverage as LearnDash customers.
In short: it’s an exciting time to be a LearnDash customer!
Until next time!
(Don’t have LearnDash? Join the fun!)