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Blackboard Help

Random Blocks

This information applies only to the Original Course View.

You can specify that a random selection of questions is presented each time a student takes the test.

When you create a test in the Original Course View, you can use random blocks to be sure that each student receives a different version of the test.

Watch a video about random blocks

This video explains how to create a random block. Learn how to add random block questions to tests, edit the number of questions you want to show, and the edit the question points.

Video: How to create a random block of test questions

About random blocks

  • Unlike question sets, random blocks draw questions from pools only. You can use more than one pool to draw your questions from.
  • You can't add a random block of questions from another test or survey.
  • You can't include a random block in a survey or a pool.
  • You choose the number of questions to show from the random block to show. For example, you can show 3 questions out of 50. The questions are then randomly distributed so that each student sees a different set of 3 questions.
  • You can show students all of the questions in the random block. Questions are randomized for each student.
  • You can't use the search function or browse metadata when you make your question selection for random blocks.

Create a random block of questions

When you add questions as a random block, each question is linked, not copied. So, if you change the original question, the revised version of the question appears.

If enabled, be sure to disable the pop-up blocker for Blackboard Learn so that you can access the Create Random Block pop-up window.

  1. Access the test. From the Reuse Question menu, select Create Random Block.
  2. In the pop-up window, select the check boxes for one or more pools.
  3. Select the check box for at least one question type to include. All questions that meet the criteria appear.
  4. Select Submit. The Test Canvas appears and displays a success message. The random block of questions is added to the test.
  5. Select Number of Questions to display to access the pop-up box and type the number of questions you want students to see. Select Submit.
  6. Select Points per question to access the pop-up box. Type a point value. This point value is assigned to each question in the random block. You can't assign separate point values for individual questions in the same random block. So, you may want to only include questions of approximately the same difficulty.
  7. Select Preview questions that match selected criteria to expand or collapse the list of questions. You can view and edit individual questions.

You can't delete questions within a random block. If you don’t want a question to be included in your random block, remove it from the pool it appears in.

Edit and delete random blocks

Access a random block's menu to edit or delete it. On the Test Canvas, you can change the point value for each question in the random block or the number of questions you want used in the test.