To resume or not to resume...

Sep 02, 2011

...that really is my question! 

Hi, Quizmaker Experts -

I need assistance on a Catch-22 type situation...


We have several required exams constructed using Quizmaker which employees must take when applying for particular jobs.  Employees can take these exams at any of several designated office locations where we have test proctors present to monitor them.  Each location has 2-3 PC's available for employees to use to take the exam.

Problem #1

When an employee comes in to take their exam and uses a PC on which the previous employee had taken the same exam, they would be presented with the "Resume where you left off?" message.  This would allow test takers to view the exam questions - or worse - submit the previous test taker's answers as their own. 

Our solution:  Republish the exams with the Resume feature set to "No."

Problem #2

That caused a problem when an employee left his PC to take an emergency phone call.  When he returned, he had to start the exam all over again.  Plus, the restarted exam consisted of a whole new set of 25 questions - not the same set of questions.  He was a bit upset about this.

My Question

How can we:

  • Allow users to resume their exam where they left off (when they leave to use the restroom, answer the phone, etc.)...BUT / AND...
  • Prevent the next user of this same PC to not be presented with the "Do you want to resume..." question.
13 Replies
Shelly Cook

Are you using a LMS to host & track you quiz?   We have experienced the a similar situation at our organization and I too would like clarity on using the Articulate feature to resume where you left off vs. the typical LMS bookmarking function. 

Problem #1 - We think if we use the LMS bookmarking function, then the progress in the course will be unique to the LMS log in ID vs. cookies or what ever prompts the ARticulate option to resume. 

Problem #2 - I believe this is more a function of using a larger question bank than the # of questions in the quiz.  My experience is when the quiz is refreshed, the questions change.  You may be able to trick the system a bit using question groups made up of  similar questions, set to randomize but only pick one question from each group.

Don't know if this would work, again question between Articulate resume function and LMS bookmarking, is to change the browser settings to clear the cache upon log off/shut down.  Maybe removing browser history will drop the cookie or whatever Articulate uses to prompt the resume feature.

As for people leaving for an emergency... if it's quick, then getting back to the quiz shouldn't be a problem.  In our organization, if they leave for more than 10 minutes, their session will time out - which is less about the Quiz and more about the browser or portal settings.  Can you lengthen the amount of time before the sessions ends in your environment?

Hope this is helpful.  We are learning as we go so if you solve this issue, please share it back as I would be interested in learning what is the "best" way to solve this problem.

Jeff Furumura

Thanks for the replies.  I should confess that we do not use an LMS, but have constructed a small database to hold basic exam data (name, empl ID, raw score, passing score, etc.).  We are in the middle of a search for an LMS/LCMS, so this is a temporary solution for us.  I have constructed an "exam site" where we allow employees to log in using pre-assigned ID/PW combinations that are tied to a specific exam.  The "Admin function" built into the site allows for the creation of ID/PW combinations - as well as the ability to add new exams to the site library, and to run reports.  I used ASP (along with a little AJAX) to build the site, and use an MS Access database to hold the score data.

Unfortunately, I'm not able to alter the size of the question bank.  We were explicitly given a set of 80 questions for one exam, and 66 questions for the other - but both exams consist of a set of 25 questions pulled from their respective banks.  We are governed by strict Union rules for these promotional qualifying exams, so any "funny business" that we do to manipulate the way the tests are given could be seen as a violation of the the Union guidelines and a cause for a grievance.

We can really relate to that "learning as we go" line - but we use the more appropo analogy of "...building a plane - after it's already taken off"...!

Question:  Does anyone know where Articulate writes the info that it needs when the Resume feature is set "on" for a published course?  Is this in the Windows temp directory?  Is this in IE somewhere?

Brian Piper

If you're not using an LMS, Articulate WILL use a flash sharedObject (cookie), unfortunately, that's stored outside the browser, so clearing your cache (or even deleting your cookies) won't fix this. The sharedObjects are stored on the local PC (somewhere like C:\Documents and Settings\[username]\Application Data\Macromedia\Flash Player\#SharedObjects

I'm trying to figure out how to over-ride this selection, if possible, without having to re-publish every course...

Jeff Furumura

Hi, Brian(s) -

Thanks for clarifying the zero impact that clearing cache has on the Resume feature, and for identifying the tag to flip in the playerproperties.xml file (...but I still don't see the tag name...?).

Question:  What if I'm not using the Presenter module but only the Quizmaker module?  Can this still be accessed somewhere?

Brian Piper

Jeff, the tag is UseSharedObj

and, the word from Brian in

is that you have to re-publish the Quizmaker stand-alone quizzes. No way to turn those, that's what I'm doing now. But it beats having to do all the courses too, because they take 1-2 hours each to least...

Jeff Furumura

Thanks for the insights into Presenter, Brian P & Brian B.  That will help me in the future.  As for my immediate problem, I guess we'll just have to determine which situation is more preventable - which we've decided is Problem #2.  We're advising our test proctors to inform each individual BEFORE they take the test that once they begin - they must remain seated until they have completed the exam and submitted their answers.  We've already re-published them all with the Resume feature set to "off."

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