Using Respondus to Convert Tests for Use in OpenClass

If you have tests from a textbook publisher it is very likely that they allow you to download these tests into a compressed format that can be directly imported into your course shell with a major Learning Management System. At this point, OpenClass does not handle such imports except in a handful of formats. However we could use a combination of Respondus and CourseSites to make this conversion possible.

To do this, you will need to download test files into a Blackboard-compatible format. Some publishers have such tests already exported for you to download directly from their sites. Others allow you to export on your own, into a format you would like to use. In the latter case, export a test into a Blackboard format. This will produce a zipped file you can save on your local computer, and send to us for conversion.

The Adams Center can then help you to convert such zipped files for use in OpenClass via Respondus. Or we can show you how to make this conversion if you have a copy of Respondus yourself.

Text to Test: Use Respondus to Convert Tests into OpenClass Online Assessments

Written by the Instructional Design Team

Creating an online test manually can be a tedious and time-consuming process. You can use Respondus to simplify the process. Here is the general process for doing so.

Creating tests in Respondus:

  1. Format the file (in Microsoft Word, RTF or Text format) using the Respondus guidelines. You can find the formatting guide by clicking on “help” in your Respondus program and search for the formatting guideline, or check this video for an illustration;

  2. Launch Respondus on a Windows platform (unfortunately Respondus does not have a Mac version yet);

  3. When asked to choose a “personality” (Respondus’  term for the testing environment to be used), choose “IMS QTI” ;

  4. Click on “import questions”, browse for the test file you just formatted, select it, fill out the fields required, and click on “preview”.

  5. You will now either be given the feedback that the questions are imported successfully or given a prompt that there are any “errors”. If you see any, go back and follow the instructions to correct the file and import the file again. Sometimes it is a very minor issue (for instance, extra spaces in the text, additional lines, etc.)  Come to the Adams Center for us to show you how this works if you want.

  6. After fixing the error, save and close and use “preview” to import again;

  7. Click on the “Preview and Publish” tab;

  8. Click on “preview” to see the questions and use the “modify” button to modify as necessary;

  9. Click on “publish”;

  10. Click on “Save QTI XML file” tab;

  11. Choose “points a decimal numbers” or “points as percentages…” (check the percentage option);

  12. Choose “QTI ZML zip file using IMS content packaging 1.1.3.

  13. You will then be asked to specify where to save this packaged file, and it is going to appear as a compressed file with “.zip” file extension.

Importing tests into OpenClass:

Now go to OpenClass and follow these steps:

  1. Click on “modify menu”;

  2. Click on “add & arrange”;

  3. Click on “add an item” where you would like the quiz or test to be, or add it to the end and rearrange it to your desired position later. Check “gradable” when you create this quiz or test.

  4. Close the “add & arrange” window;

  5. Click on the tab you just created on the course menu;

  6. Click on “modify page” at the top right corner;

  7. Select “import”;

  8. Beside “choose assessment package type”, choose “Respondus” from the menu;

  9. Click on “choose file” and select the zipped file you just saved;

  10. Click on “upload and import file”, and you will get a message saying the request is processed. If it is not a large test file, you should be able to see it in a matter of seconds. If the file is large, with graphics, for instance, you may need to wait longer. If you find that your page is stuck, you might want to try a different browser. Currently Firefox seems to be working best for OpenClass assessments.

Additional uses of Respondus:

  • Import publisher test banks: Respondus has a database of publisher test banks which you can easily import into OpenClass by using Respondus. Check this video for the method to import such test banks into Respondus. The rest of the steps should be the same with what we described above.

  • Create print copies of electronic tests: One thing we have also noticed is that with such online tests converted through Respondus, you can also create print copies in case you need a paper version as a backup plan, or if you have students with special needs who would benefit from having a paper version. You can also choose to print one with answers so that you can review tests with students.

  • Publish the same tests to multiple courses: Pearson Openclass is working on adding a feature to export tests and other course components. Before that is made available, you should also be able to keep the test package files and import them into multiple courses.

Respondus also has a number of demo videos which are very helpful. Check this site for more information. Please notice, however, that some of these demo videos are made for other types of learning management system that may not work for OpenClass. The QTI import method described above is more platform-neutral, allowing Respondus tests to be compatible with the OpenClass environment.

We realize that converting a test to the online format  involves quite a number of steps, each of which may be prone to errors of some sort. If you do not anticipate doing this test conversion very often, you may simply send your tests over to the Adams Center for conversion. As we may do this on a daily basis, we are more aware of some common problems to avoid. If you plan to create tests as you go, and you would like to convert the tests yourself, we’d be more than happy to show you how the conversion process works. In either case,  feel free to check with us what is the best way to proceed. We hope that the initial investment in converting the test will save you tons of time in having to grade standardized portions of tests.