For HTML Quiz Writer
2. Differences between a computer quiz and a HTML quiz page.
3. Function keys.
4. Quiz header.
5. Action / destination.
6. Quiz instructions.
7. Gateway scripts.
8. Avoiding gateway scripts.
"Harris Test" will now produce a quiz in HTML code so that it can be placed on the Internet as a home page.
While this program will do most of the work (in most cases, all of the work) in making a quiz page you may still want to add some final touches to it, therefore you may need some knowledge yourself of HTML programming or know someone that does. Of course you must also know how to upload pages to your Internet server, have software able to preview an HTML page before you upload it so that it can be debugged, and just have a general knowledge of handling HTML pages.
The purpose of this program is to make easier something that you already know how to do or are willing to learn. Think of it this way, if you can't compose a document with a pen then you can't do it with a word processor, if you don't know the route to walk to somewhere then you can't drive a car there. Likewise if you know nothing about managing HTML pages, Internet addresses, gateway scripts, handling "forms", etc. then even though this program will write the pages for you, it may not prove useful to you.
So, what will this new feature do? It will make a Internet home page out of the questions that you have entered into "Harris Test". It will do so in the form of a "form" that a student may fill out on the internet by either clicking on options or by filling in text.
If you provide the proper ACTION and DESTINATIONS then the results of the quiz will either be mailed to your e-mail address or sent to a gateway script (that YOU provide) for computer grading.
It will provide you with a printed correct answer list to help you manually score quizzes e-mailed to you and a correct answer computer file to allow your gateway script (or the e-mail grading program) to score the quizzes automatically.
If your quiz is produced as multiple pages, or contains graphics, this program will give you a printed list of each page's (or graphic's) file names. You must upload every page/graphic on the list for your quiz to function.
So how long does it take to generate an HTML test? Once you have typed in your questions (in uncoded plain text), it will take the program about 1 second to generate a 20 question test, about 10,000 letters of code.
DIFFERENCES BETWEEN A COMPUTER QUIZ AND A 'HTML' QUIZ PAGE.
A computer quiz made by 'Harris Test' can be taken on a stand-alone computer or (with varing degrees of success) a local area network (LAN). This means that the people taking the quiz must all take it on the same computer or on several computers and the data be manually collected, or if on a LAN they must be in the same building.
If you place your quiz on the Internet however then the location of people taking the quiz is only limited by the fact that they must be on Earth as interplanetary Internet connections are not currently available.
A computer quiz can use all the resources of your computer. An Internet quiz is limited by the current state of the art of the HTLM programming language. (Note; this limitation only applies to a WWW connection (which is what we are doing here), if you have a full Internet link then you can also use the full resources of the computer.) This means that some of the functions of a computer quiz cannot be accomplished or that they will be different.
A. Record scores on disk.
B. Print out score slip.
On an HTML quiz the quiz data can be either sent to your E-mail address or to a gateway script that YOU provide.
C. Print questions in random order.
D. Print MC answers in random order.
On an HTML quiz this program will place both or either the questions and the multiple choice answers in random order however it will only make one HTML page per quiz. This means that while the quiz will be made with the questions and/or the MC answers in random order, that whatever order is produced, every student will take a quiz in that one order.
E. Print instructions.
F. Review your answers.
On an HTML quiz there is no way to block going back to, and changing, an answer.
G. Show correct answers.
On an HTML quiz the student's answers can only be processed after the quiz is finished, therefore there is no way to score answers as the quiz is being taken.
H. Repeat quiz.
There is no way to stop a student from re-accessing a home page.
I. View wrong answer after quiz end.
J. Time limit / question.
K. Time limit / quiz.
An HTML quiz cannot have time limits.
L. Use n selected questions.
This is supported in HTML quizzes however as with 'random order' (see above) only one quiz page is produced.
No pop-up calculator on an HTML quiz.
O. Access number.
P. Survey / Graded questions.
From the 'HTML Parameters' screen these function keys will do the following.
[TAB] Will begin writing the HTML code for your quiz page.
[ENTER] Change parameter field.
[ESC] Quit, return to "Make a Quiz" screen.
[F1] Display help. (This document.)
[F2] Restore current field. This function will work until you leave the field, then the changes are permanent.
[F3] Clear current field.
[F4] Save current HTML parameters. You may save up to 8 sets of parameters per course.
[F5] Load HTML parameters that have been saved. Note; only parameters that are currently blank will be loaded.
[F6] Toggle between entering survey question instructions and graded question instructions.
From the 'HTML Parameters' screen you may enter a 5 line header for your quiz page. The lines are printed in this order...
School / Organization name.
Headers are always centered horizontally on the page.
From the 'HTML Parameters' screen you must fill in an ACTION line that tells the server how to process the 'form'. You may also fill in two additional HIDDEN lines to give instructions to further process your 'form'.
This program will use the ACTION line to generate this code...
If you do not enter text into a line then it will be ommitted. If the form of a line is improper for your Internet provider or you need to add more text than can be entered then you must manually enter the proper code using your HTML editing software.
Enter the instructions you want to be printed for your students to read. The instructions will be printed after the header and before the questions. You may enter two sets of instructions.
If your quiz has survey questions you may enter instructions for them. If your quiz has graded questions then you may also print instructions for them. Press [F7] to toggle between the two types.
Note: if your quiz has no survey questions then the survey instructions will not be printed, no graded questions, no graded instructions. Make sure that you are entering the correct type of instructions. The 'Print instructions' quiz parameter must be set to 'YES' to print any instructions.
This is the big stumbling block in using this program. A gateway script is a program that YOU provide (see the last section of help for another option). It runs on your internet provider's server (computer) and it will manipulate the data from the quiz page.
I do not know what type of computer your provider is using, I do not know what exact format his CGI parser will generate, I do not have access to his computer, and I do not even know if his system will allow gateway scripts, therefore I cannot provide a gateway script for you. The best I can do is to provide this description of what a gateway script should do and hope that you can either write one or know someone who can. By the way, if you are able to produce a gateway script and are willing to give it away or even want to sell or lease it, let me know. If someone contacts me wanting one I will put him in touch with you and if your systems are compatible you can negotiate a deal beteween yourselves.
If you choose to use a gateway script then when a student finishes a quiz and presses the 'transmit' button the data in the quiz 'form' will be sent to the script for processing. The quiz data should be passed through a CGI parser before arriving at the gateway script.
In addition to the quiz data several additional pieces of information will also tag along. This includes the quiz page's header lines, the student's name and class, and the file name of the correct answer file for that quiz.
Once the quiz form has been received by the gateway script it must then locate and load the correct answer file for that quiz. It must then compare the correct answers to the student's answers to score the quiz.
This is an important concept. You do not want to have to write a new gateway script for each quiz, you want to write one script that will process all future quizzes. When you upload a quiz page onto the Internet you place the corresponding correct answer file where your gateway script can find it.
Using a filename similar to the correct answer filename (for example student's scores from PHYSICS8.ANS would be stored into PHYSICS8.SCR) the gateway script must begin a file of quiz scores for that quiz and add to it as additional student's quiz forms are transmited to it for that particular quiz.
The student score file should contain the student's name, class, score, and each of the answers given by each student, plus any additional information that would prove useful.
The student score file should be in a useful format. If the scores will be retreived by the instructor as a word processing document then it should be in a WP format. If the scores will be retreived in a spreadsheet, database, or HTML format then it should be in one of those formats. Next the gateway script should create an 'exit' page telling the student his score or at least that his quiz has been received and processed and then the student should be sent to that page.
As you can see this will require considerable programming knowledge and is not something that will be done in an afternoon. The upside is that if it is done properly it will only have to be done once and it will serve every instructor on the same Internet provider at the same time.
Where to start to create your gateway script? First create several HTML quizzes using this program, use as many question types as possible. Upload the quizzes and take each quiz several times giving different answers each time, some correct and some incorrect. Have the quiz form transmitted through your Internet provider's CGI parser and E-mailed to yourself. Now inspect the E-mail and the correct answer list for each quiz.
Once you have compared the E-mail from several quiz runs to the corresponding correct answer file you will begin to see how the data from one can be used to grade the other. Now comes the hard part, write the gateway script to do it.
One last note, on fill-in-the-blank questions you will have to find some way to impliment 'answer reduction'.
Want to avoid gateway scripts? Coming soon (I hope), this program will score and combine quizzes received as E-mail. The basic premise is that you must store all your quiz e-mail in the directory C:\TESTER\GRADING along with the corresponding correct answer file (which will automatically be placed there by the program when it makes the HTML quiz). Start the program and you get graded quiz scores. It will work as a gateway script (as far as grading the quizzes) for e-mail. As long as you load all quiz e-mail into the directory it will score multiple quizzes for multiple courses for multiple instructors.
The trick is will be to send all the quiz e-mail for all the quizzes into the same directory. Then just run the grading program at the end of the day and all the quizzes will automatically be graded and filed. After each e-mail is graded it is erased so that it cannot be graded again. Well, it seems like a good idea!