How to Use Item Duration

This guide demonstrates how to create a test containing timed items. You can find more information in the ‘Item Duration’ section of the Surpass help.

Note: Item duration can be used in a variety of scenarios but it works best in untimed, forward only tests.

Step 1: Create items with Item Duration defined

In Item Authoring, create and edit your item as normal. 

Use the ‘Item Duration’ setting to set how long a candidate has to respond to the item. Once you have set the duration, finish editing your item, set its status to ‘Live’, and save.



Step 2: Create an HTML test 

To enable item timers, your test must be delivered in HTML delivery with forward only navigation.
Navigate to ‘Test Creation’ and begin creating your test. In the ‘General Settings’ tab under ‘Test Delivery Options’, tick the ‘Deliver in HTML Delivery’ checkbox.




Step 3: Set test to forward only navigation (recommended)

We recommend that test creators use forward only navigation when creating tests with timed items. If added to tests with standard navigation, candidates are still able to access previously answered questions but cannot modify their answers.

To enable forward only navigation, open the ‘Advanced Settings’ tab when editing your test. In the ‘Test Style’ dropdown, select ‘Custom Branding Forward Only’.




Set its status to ‘Live’ and select the ‘OK’ button to save.


Step 4: Create a test form 

Navigate to the ‘Test Forms’ section of ‘Test Creation’ and create your test form.


Step 5: Set test form to untimed (recommended)

It is recommended that timed items are only used in untimed tests. If timed items are used in a timed test, the timer that ends first determines the end of the test. For example, if the final item of a test is a question with a 60 second timer but the test itself still has 30 minutes remaining, the test will end when the 60 second item timer runs out.
To set your test form to untimed, open the ‘Test Form Rules’ tab in the ‘Edit Test Form’ window. In the ‘Test Duration’ section, set the ‘Timing’ dropdown to ‘Untimed’.


Save your test form.


Step 5: Add timed items to the test form.

Use the ‘Add’ button to add your timed items to your test form.

Set the test form status to ‘Live’ and select the ‘OK’ button to save.

Your test with timed items is now ready to be scheduled and delivered.

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