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RE: shiny and exams [ reply ]
By: Achim Zeileis on 2016-11-22 12:50
Various comments:

(1) Moodle is actually quite flexible concerning "cloze" exercises with different components. See the fourfold2.Rnw and boxhist2.Rnw exercises for illustrations of how to include "num" answer fields or drop-down menus for "schoice" fields anywhere in the text. These illustrations place the answer fields in tables/matrices but instead you could also have a longer block of text, then some answer fields and then another block of text and another set of answer fields. From you description this seems to be the closest match to what you want to do.

(2) If you use split up the question into separate .Rnw files (e.g., ex1.Rnw, ex2.Rnw, ex3.Rnw), these do not need to be autonomous. If you then say

exams2xyz(c("ex1.Rnw", "ex2.Rnw", "ex3.Rnw"))

then the three .Rnw files are always processed sequentially. So ex2.Rnw can access all the variables that ex1.Rnw generated - and ex3.Rnw can access all variables that the other two have generated. The only caveat is that one has to make sure that ex2.Rnw is not used in a context without ex1.Rnw which would surely lead to errors.

(3) We are working on a shiny app but not for conducting exams but - at the moment - only for generating/managing them. You can look at the devel version here on R-Forge. But currently the score is only setting up exams and not conducting them in the app. I'm not sure whether one would need to be aware of particular constraints regarding number of simultaneous accesses and authentication etc. Personally, I would be very careful with using something like this. A proper learning management system (LMS) hosted by the university would certainly be preferable for me.

(4) Instead of using shiny and generating exams "on-the-fly" one could more easily generate a large enough number of static HTML exams. And then each exam would just need a (link to a) form for entering the solutions. I think some people then use Google forms for collecting the data. (Didn't you even send me an example on how to do this a few years ago?) Personally, I wouldn't dare collecting student data through Google due to privacy concerns. But still a solution with many static HTML pages plus web forms would seem more appealing to me than a shiny app with dynamic templates. The latter should be more difficult to trace, I suppose.

shiny and exams [ reply ]
By: Markus Loecher on 2016-11-22 08:09
Dear authors,
I was wondering if there were any plans on extending the exams export functions to a shiny app in the future.
This would be attractive for me for many reasons, but one struggle I have not solved yet are the various constraints that moodle poses on the question structure.
In particular, it seems to offer only "one question at a time" template.
My questions most of the time build upon each other and/or have a lengthy introduction, so splitting up a multi-item question into single autonomous questions is no trivial task.


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