About Learning Outcomes Boundaries

About: This article explains how to use Learning Outcome Boundaries in a test form and the consequences of applying these to your test. Learning Outcome Boundaries span several areas of the system - Site Settings, Test Creation and Reporting - this article will focus on the functionality in the Site Settings and Test Creation screens.

By applying Learning Outcome Boundaries to a test form, candidates will need to achieve a certain percentage against individual learning outcomes in order to pass a test.

Users are also able to set a threshold for the total marks that need to be obtained for a particular learning outcome before a learning outcome boundary affects a candidate's performance.

The first step is to edit the Learning Outcome Threshold from within Site Settings. The threshold determines how many marks need to be attributed to a learning outcome before any Learning Outcome Boundary takes effect. The following example explains this further:
  • A site administrator has set the Learning Outcome Threshold to 10.
  • An item writer has created the items for the test. There are 10 questions with 1 mark, all assigned the learning outcome 'Understanding European Geography'.
  • This means that the learning outcome 'Understanding European Geography' has a total of 10 marks attributed to it, and therefore has enough marks to qualify it for use with a learning outcome boundary.
  • If there are only nine 1-mark questions in the test with the Understanding European Geography learning outcome, the candidate's performance against the learning outcome would not affect their overall result, because the learning outcome does not meet the requisite number of marks set in the threshold.
Below is a step by step guide on how to set up the threshold and set Learning Outcome Boundaries.

Setting the Learning Outcome Threshold


Only system administrators or those with Site Settings permissions will be able to edit the threshold.

Step 1: Navigate to Test Settings, under Site Settings
From the menu in the top-right corner of the Surpass home screen, select Site Settings. When the screen has loaded, select the Site Settings tab and from the list on the left-hand side of the screen, select 'Test Settings'.


Step 2: Set your Threshold
At the bottom of the Test Settings screen, you can enter a number under 'Learning Outcome Total Mark Threshold'. This can be a whole number anywhere between 0 and 999.

Setting Learning Outcome Boundaries


Step 1: Navigate to the Test Form Details screen
Ensure you already have your test set up and that it contains items with Learning Outcomes applied to them. Then from the Test Forms screen, select your test, then select the 'Edit Test Form' button. A new dialog will open, and in this dialog, navigate to the 'Test Form Details' tab.

Step 2: Set the test to 'Require Learning Outcome Percentage'
In the Test Form Details tab, navigate to the 'Test Settings'. In this section, select the 'Require Learning Outcome Percentage' checkbox, to enable learning outcome percentage pass marks.


Step 3: Apply Learning Outcome Boundaries
Once the checkbox has been selected, an 'Edit' button will become available. Selecting this will open a new dialog where you will be able to add percentage pass marks to your Learning Outcomes.

You will be able to set Learning Outcome Boundaries against all learning outcomes applied to items in the test form, or you can add the Learning Outcome Boundary against specific learning outcomes:



A. Unspecified Learning Outcome: The percentage that you place in this box will apply to all Learning Outcomes, meaning that a candidate will have to achieve the designated percentage of every learning outcome that has met the threshold.

B. Specified Learning Outcomes: To add percentage pass marks against specific learning outcomes, select 'Add' and then enter the Learning Outcome name and pass mark. It is crucially important that the spelling of the Learning Outcome is accurate and maps directly to the name given Item Authoring.


Step 4: Save and Review
Once you are happy with the changes you have made, select 'OK'. The Test Form Details screen will populate with the Learning Outcome Boundaries you have set.

Note: Once a test has been delivered, it is possible to add, remove or edit Learning Outcome Boundaries from within Rescoring.


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