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Answer Key Basics

  • The answer keys need to be bubbled in on the same pink raspberry scantron forms that the students use.
  • Answer keys from other sections or previous semesters may be reused as long as they are still in good condition.
  • Fill in all necessary bubbles dark enough for the scanning machine to read. If an answer key cannot be read completely, you may be contacted to come and fix it by bubbling over everything again, and your test will not be scanned again until you do so.
  • In the NAME/SUBJECT/DATE box, we recommend you print the quiz or test name followed by the word “KEY”, followed by the course prefix, and course number, and section(s), or some variation of that. But at a minimum, please at least write the word “KEY” in there somewhere.
  • For the I.D. NUMBER, bubble in the seven zeroes to let the software know it is an answer key. The first position containing the letters of the alphabet is irrelevant, but many instructors will still fill in either the “A” or the “K”.
  • If you are giving more than one version of the test, fill in the TEST FORM block to correspond to the appropriate answer key for each test version (A-D). If you need to give a test with more than 4 versions, please discuss your options with Test Scoring staff. It is possible, but your results will also take longer to process, possibly by several hours up to an entire extra day.
  • Some instructors also may want to make use of the KEY ITEM COUNT and EXAM NO. fields in some manner. Our summary reports will show whatever info is bubbled in those fields, but they are not used for anything important during scoring and can be safely left empty.
  • Fill in the answers for whatever questions you wish to score, and check your keys for accuracy. Student forms will be graded against the keys EXACTLY as you marked them.
  • Include an answer key for each version of the test you are giving.
  • Answer keys must have the same number of questions for each version.

ANDs, ORs, and Omits

  • To mark an item on the answer key so that it is only correct if the student bubbles in all correct bubbles (an AND), fill in all the appropriate bubbles on the key. For example, if the correct answer to an item is A, B, and E, you would fill in the A, B, and E bubbles for that item. Student responses will be marked correct only if they bubble in all of A, B, and E. If one is not bubbled, the whole question will be marked wrong. If any other letters are also bubbled, the question will be marked wrong.
  • To mark an item on the answer key so that it is correct if the student bubbles in any *one* of the correct bubbles (an OR), fill in all the appropriate bubbles on the key and also bubble over the question number. For example, if question number 5 can be C or D, bubble in C and D and also bubble over the number 5. Student responses will be marked correct only if they bubble in C, D, or C and D; bubbling in A, B, or E, even when C or D is bubbled in, will cause the response to be counted as wrong.
  • To omit a question from a test, simply leave that question blank on the key. If you give a 50 question test but do not want to count question 24, leave question 24 completely blank: the test will then be scored out of the 49 remaining items.
  • A variation on omitting is allowing any response to an item. To do this, fill in all the bubbles for that question (i.e. bubble in A, B, C, D, and E) and bubble over the question number as you would for an OR. Any student response will be counted as right. The only way to get that question wrong would be if the student left it blank.

Common Mistakes

  • One or more answer keys were not bubbled in dark enough, resulting in versions having a different number of questions when the answer to a question cannot be read
  • An answer key for a particular version was not submitted
  • One or more question numbers on the answer key was mistakenly left blank, when an instructor did not intend to omit that question
  • One or more question numbers on the answer key had the wrong answer marked
  • An answer key was damaged and unreadable (torn, liquid spills, rained on, or too badly worn out or crumpled)
  • One answer was crossed out and another was selected, unintentionally making both answers required in order to get the question correct. If you need to change an answer, erase the wrong answer thoroughly or use white out or correction tape

Other Tips

  • Unless requested otherwise, we only upload the raw score. For a 30 question test, all scores would be uploaded as integer values ranging between 0 and 30.
  • To change the point values, just mention your preferences in the Special Instructions section of the Request Form. We can set a single multiplier value for every question (2 pts each, 2.5 pts each, etc), or set different point values for different sections (Q1-5 worth 2 pts each, Q 6-10 worth 3 pts each). For unusual point values (like a 67 question being worth 75 pts total for instance), you can also just mention the total desired points and let our software do the actual calculation for you. This gives greater decimal accuracy and avoids rounding errors.
  • If you want to give your students a percentage score instead, just mention total points = 100 in Special Instructions of the request form.
  • If you absolutely need to give a test with more than 100 questions, you can split it into two parts and use two separate answer sheets, scoring each part separately. If you do this, we recommend that you start the second part’s numbering over again at 1, to avoid any confusion when you and your students fill out the answer sheets.