How to Create Optional Sections in Test Creation

About: A section selector can be added to a test, giving candidates the choice between several sections to answer. When candidates reach the Section Selector, they are able to choose which sections from the group they attempt. The Section Selector determines the mandatory number of sections which must be completed from those available. This guide will explain how to add optional sections to a test in Test Creation.

Note: In order to include a Section Selector in your test, it must be created or edited using the Test Creation screens. The ability to add optional sections is not available in the Test Wizard.

Step 1: Create or edit a test form

You can either create a new test form or edit an existing one. If you want to create a new test from go into the Test Forms tab and select ‘Create Test Form’. If you want to edit an existing test, highlight the test form you wish to edit and select ‘Edit Test Form’.


Step 2: Set duration to 'Timed Sections'

Once you have opened your desired Test Form, go to the ‘Edit Test Form’ screen. Ensure you choose ‘Timed Sections’ from the drop-down menu, on the right-hand side, under the ‘Duration’ box. This will enable a section selector to be added.


Step 3: Adding a Section Selector

In the 'Test Form Rules' tab, select your test form name in the top-left corner of the screen and select the 'Add' button. You will then be able to choose a section type. Choose ‘Section Selector’ from the drop down list..

Give your section a name and a description to identify by, then add a time limit in which candidates must select their section(s) by. Finally, specify how many sections are required; this must be a minimum of one.


Step 4: Adding multiple sections 

You can now add multiple sections to your section selector. To add a section, click ‘Add’ and the Section Properties screen will appear. Enter your properties and settings, you must enter the duration of the section. Click ‘Add’ once you are finished and this will populate a new section in your Section Selector heading.

Repeat this until you are satisfied with the number of sections for candidates to choose from.

Step 5: Adding items to the sections

Now add items to each of your sections as you usually would with a fixed section, to add sections you must click each section and add items per section.

Note: You must have identical total marks, and quantities, in each section to ensure fairness to all candidates no matter which section they choose. Your sections must include the same number of questions with an equal total of marks, they do not have to be the same questions type, for your test to be valid. 

Once you have added items to your sections, select 'Validate' to check your test is valid. It will check your Section Selector sections are valid and have matching item marks and quantities. If you have chosen to add dynamic sections a warning message will appear stating you have dynamic sections in your Test Form, as the system will be unable to check validity of dynamic sections.

Tests including Section Selector sections can be delivered in web delivery or SecureClient. They are not compatible with Learning Outcome Boundaries or Scale Scores.

For more information please read the article 'Section Selector' in the Surpass Help. 

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