To find out more about these changes and other updates made to Surpass for this release, read the 'New Features' section below, and visit the Surpass Learning Portal to find out more.
New FeaturesBelow you will find details of new and updated features that have been introduced in release 12.11 of Surpass. The features are divided into sections based on the area of the system they affect.
Test Delivery: PDF Viewer Enhancements
When using the PDF Viewer, highlighting applied by the candidate will persist. If they close the PDF Viewer and then re-open it, any highlights they have made will still be there. The PDF Viewer will also return to the last page viewed when it is re-opened. Should the candidate perform a search in the PDF and then close the PDF Viewer, the search results will still be returned when the PDF Viewer is re-opened, providing the search bar was not cleared.
Item Authoring: Allow question items to be added to Introduction section
A new ‘Item Purpose’ setting in Item Authoring allows a question item to be set as ‘Sample Item’. Items set as samples can be added to the introductory section of a test. Adding items to the Introduction section will give candidates the opportunity to familiarise themselves with different question types before starting their test.
Item Authoring: Marked Learning Outcomes
Human-marked items can now be set to have Marked Learning Outcomes. This means that a number of marks can be assigned to each Learning Outcome that is associated with the item, so that markers can score against this criteria. This allows markers to be more specific about what marks are being awarded for.
Item Authoring: Item Owner
Subject managers can now change the owner of an item. The Item Owner defaults to the user who created it. In order for information to be kept up to date, this can be changed by selecting a new button at the bottom of the edit item screen. This will present a list of all users with permissions for that subject; these users can be selected as the new item owner. This ensures that item owner details can always be kept up to date.
Item Authoring: Add Multiple Media to Items
It is now possible to add up to 5 pieces of media to an item. This gives Item Authors greater flexibility over the media they add as previously only 1 piece of media could be included.
Item Authoring: Simplified Authoring – Multiple Response
Continuing the work to simplify the Item Authoring interface, additional options in the ‘answer options’ step of Multiple Response question types can now be accessed via a cog icon.
Item Authoring: Question stem image alignment
When adding an image to the question stem of an item, it is now possible to select whether the image is aligned right, left, or centre, giving authors greater flexibility over how items look.
Item Authoring: Define maximum number of columns and rows in spreadsheet question type
Item authors can now choose the maximum number of rows and columns that a candidate can include in their response to the Spreadsheet question type. This can either be 11 rows by 26 columns, or 200 rows by 13 columns.
Test Creation: User Associations
User associations can now be enabled for a test. This means a specific marker or moderator can be assigned to a test at the point of scheduling. This gives greater control over which users mark and moderate specific tests.
Test Creation: Enable/Disable fit height to screen
A new setting within Test profiles determines whether or not the delivery engine will automatically adjust to fit the full height of the screen the test is being taken on.
Test Creation: Unscheduled breaks per Candidate
A change to the existing ‘unscheduled breaks’ functionality means that these breaks are now defined via the API at candidate level, rather than test form level. Candidates who have been allocated unscheduled breaks can pause their test at any time, and as many times as they need to, until they have used up the total amount of break time.
Test Creation: Test Review
When sharing tests in the Test Wizard, you now have the option to schedule the test for Surpass users to take as part of the quality review process. This generates a keycode for the user(s) so that they can log in to the test. This provides a secure way of sharing a test with other users, allowing you to view the test throughout the Test Administration screens on Surpass.
Test Creation: Enhancements to Paper Generation
When creating fixed forms of a dynamic test for paper delivery, you can now generate up to 5 fixed test forms at once using the Test Wizard. You can upload separate cover sheets to each test form and decide whether they are all associated with the same test or different tests.
Test Administration: New Void Reason
A new ‘Not yet started’ void reason is now available when voiding a test from the Invigilate screen. This gives users a further option so that they can accurately record the reason for voiding a test.
Setup and Site Admin: Read-only Access
It is now possible to create custom roles, which grant users read-only access to the Setup screens. This ensures that users can view all of the information relevant to them, but will not be able to make any edits.
Setup and Site Admin: Searchable Username
It is now possible to search for Surpass users by their username, as well as being able to search by first and last name.
Setup and Site Admin: Third-party Media Repository
A new site settings enables access to Nuxeo (a third-party media repository), if this is already being used by the organisation. With this enabled, item authors will have access to the media repository as well as the media library when adding media to items.
Setup and Site Admin: Workflow Statuses
You can now create custom workflow statuses to fit your organisation's item creation processes. This allows you to rename and reorder the default workflow statuses, as well as creating your own custom workflow statuses. You may have up to a maximum of 15 statuses in total.
Setup and Site Admin: Changes to Roles
When creating a custom role for the Item Authoring section of Surpass, you now have greater control over the permissions assigned to that role. You can restrict the permissions for all items and/or the user’s item based on the workflow status of the item. This feature replaces the previous Item Writer (Restricted) and Item Reviewer (Restricted) permissions to give you more freedom when creating roles.
Integration: Updates to v2 of the Surpass API
There have been a number of updates to the Surpass API in Release 12.11, including the ability to:
- Define unscheduled breaks per candidate using the TestSchedule resource.
- Assign a Marker and a Moderator to a Test using the TestSchedule resource.
- Enable User Associations, which allows you to associate a marker and a moderator to a test, using the Test resource.
- Retrieve the startTime and endTime for a timed section using the Result resource.
- GET a list of the custom workflows created in Site Settings, and update items with those custom workflows.
- Retrieve the itemMajorVersion and itemVersion numbers using the Item resource.
- Retrieve candidate scores up to 6 decimal places using the Result, HistoricalResult and AnalyticalResult resources.
Additional Features and Enhancements
- A new ‘bulk update’ permission, available when creating an Item Authoring custom role, gives users greater control over which users have access to this functionality.
- Special characters can now be used in all fields in item authoring, and also when entering or importing tag values.
- Information on Tag Categories is now visible in item searches.
- An update has been made to Centre details to remove primary and technical contact information and hide address details, which can now be revealed using the cog icon.
- Symbols can now be included in Subject, Item, and Centre names
- A new Test Forms setting allows users to define whether candidate scores should be rounded to 6 decimal places when extracting results via the API.
- Additional validation has been added when uploading a branching XML file.
- You are now able to edit the name of an Item List after it has been created.
- It is now possible to import up to 1300 tag values using the spreadsheet import.
Developments are underway to move Surpass from Flash to HTML. Release 12.11 of Surpass sees more features supported in HTML. To stay up to date with HTML developments, click here for a full list of supported features.
Some HTML functionality has also been removed from Beta and will now be seen by all Surpass users. This includes HTML-only subjects, HTML compatible items, and HTML tests in the Test Wizard.
Issue: Users were unable to upload OMR results where the Candidate 'Middle Name' field is empty in Candidate Setup.
Resolution: Users are now able to upload OMR results against candidates where the 'Middle Name' field is empty.
Issue: When a table was added to a question, in preview and in delivery an extra blank row was shown below.
Resolution: Tables now render properly in preview and delivery.
Issue: The 'Flag' button, 'View Feedback' button and Progress Bar did not display correctly in the test driver when the Navigation Style was set to 'Legacy Deprecated'.
Resolution: The placement of 'Flag' and 'View Feedback' buttons and the progress bar is now correct in Legacy navigation styles.
Issue: When scheduling a test in the Test Administration screens and selecting a Subject, they weren't showing in alphabetical order.
Resolution: Subjects now appear in alphabetical order in the Schedule Wizard.
Issue: When trying to select the Candidate report or use the wizard using selected candidates under the Results tab, the candidate report button is greyed out, even though they have the correct permissions. User has centre permissions for manage candidates, invigilate, schedule and view results.
Resolution: A user with the relevant roles can now access the candidate reports.
Issue: The Sigma character 'Ʃ' when input by a candidate on the Table question type during delivery, was not rendering properly in the Test Administration screens.
Resolution: Mathematical characters now display properly to the marker.
Issue: Mathematical characters and symbols were not appearing correctly for candidates during delivery.
Resolution: Mathematical symbols now render correctly for the candidates.
Issue: Items set to 'Live' that are stored in subfolders in a subject, were not appearing in the list of items when using the Bulk Update feature
Resolution: All items will now show in the list of items to be updated when using Bulk Update
Issue: If the number of Introduction pages exceeds the number of items in the test, the correct number of pages are not displaying in the breadcrumb navigation during delivery.
Resolution: The correct number of Introduction pages now display in the breadcrumb navigation.
Issue: Candidates were able to leave Survey items unanswered in test sections where the 'Required Response' setting was enabled.
Resolution: Candidates are unable to navigate away from Survey items in a 'Required Response' section without giving an answer.
Issue: A user given a role with the 'Item Writer' permission and 'Restrict view to user's items only' enabled was able to view all items at the 'Draft' and 'To Review' statuses.
Resolution: An Item Writer with these permissions is now only able to see their own items at the 'Draft' and 'To Review' statuses.