Virginia Commonwealth University

Make it real.

Respondus

Respondus is a tool for creating and managing exams, quizzes, and surveys that can be published directly to Blackboard. This is available as a free download to all VCU faculty.

Advantages 
This tool offers several advantages over the current method of authoring and distributing assessments in Blackboard. 

  • Assessment items can be created offline using Windows-based tools.
  • Microsoft Word (a tool used by nearly all faculty) is used to format and author questions.
  • Converts Word documents into Blackboard-ready assessment items.
  • Permits batch loading of assessment items (multiple questions and formats simultaneously).
  • Contains formatting options and question types not found in Blackboard's assessment authoring tool.


Authoring

  • Includes distinct user environments (called "personalities") for Blackboard, etc.
  • Create exams and assessments offline using a Windows interface.
  • Supports up to nine question types, including calculated and algorithmic formats.
  • Import questions from rich-text files (ideal for converting existing exams from MS Word).
  • Use the Exam Wizard to create an assessment in minutes and "spell check" an entire exam file (includes dictionaries for American English, Canadian English, British English, French, German, Spanish, Dutch, Finnish, and a comprehensive medical dictionary).
  • Add tables, bulleted lists, font changes, and enhanced formatting (e.g. bold, italics) just like in a word processor.
  • Insert mathematical and scientific symbols using the Respondus Equation Editor or MathType.
  • Embed graphics, audio, and video without writing or viewing the underlying HTML links.
  • Resize graphics and convert them to JPEG format with one click.
  • Add links to multimedia content on other servers with the Web Links tool.
  • Create random sets of questions in seconds with a one-step wizard.


Preview, Publish, and Print

  • Preview questions before publishing them to the server.
  • Publish exams and assessments directly to an online course (media files are automatically uploaded).
  • A “Batch Publish” feature allows assessments and surveys to be published to multiple courses in a single step.
  • Determine point values and exam/survey settings offline.
  • Print exams/surveys directly from Respondus, or save files to MS Word or rich-text format.


Retrieval, Reports, and Tools

  • Retrieve exams from the leading eLearning platforms, complete with media files.
  • Retrieve custom reports, such as student scores, summary statistics, and answer distributions.
  • Download answer databases for quizzes or surveys and save them in an Excel-compatible format.
  • Archive and restore exam/survey projects (including media content) with one click — ideal for providing a colleague with a ready-to-use exam.
  • Quickly locate questions using keyword searches.

Also includes:

  • Full context-sensitive help
  • Respondus User Guide (MS Word/Wordpad format)
  • An incredibly easy-to-use interface that makes the online help and user guide woefully neglected by most users
  • Access to hundreds of publisher test banks in Respondus format -- FREE to instructors who adopt a participating textbook



This article was updated: 09/30/2014

Suggested reading for Respondus