Creating a Test in Blackboard (Faculty)


Blackboard’s Tests tool allows you to create and deploy tests electronically from your Blackboard course shell. The Blackboard Tests tool can be used for quizzes, longer exams, quick check-ins and other types of assessments.

Creating a test involves several steps. First, you would set up the test and add questions. Then, you would deploy the test in your course, setting test options and making the test available to students.

Please note that this guide (and other help documents about this tool) uses the words “test,” “quiz” and “exam” interchangeably.


Blackboard (Faculty)


Building a Test 

To access the Tests tool, click on Course Tools in the Course Management panel, then select Tests, Surveys and Pools > Tests. Click Build Test in the upper left corner.

Type in a name, description and instructions for the test, then click Submit.

A new window opens, providing you three options:

  • Create Question: Allows you to choose from a variety of question types to build your questions. This page outlines the various question types.
  • Reuse Question: If you have created a test or quiz previously, you can reuse questions on this test. Some instructors may choose to do this if they have created chapter quizzes previously and want to use those questions on the test. Upload Questions: This allows you to upload a text file with your questions. This is not as easy as it sounds, as it requires a carefully formatted file. It is easier to use the Create Question option.

On the right of the page, the Test Question Settings button allows you to add advanced features to your questions, such as default points, images, feedback, randomization or partial credit. Select your options, then click Submit.

Image displaying options for Test Question Settings.

Creating Test Questions

To build test questions, click on the Create Question button, then select a question type from the menu. Enter the question text and the answer options. Be sure to select the button next to the correct answer so that Blackboard will be able to auto-grade the question. Note: Short answer, essay and file response questions must be graded manually.

Image displaying area to create a question.

Under the Options section, you can choose whether you would like to allow partial credit, change the display of the answers or randomize the answers. Important: Do not check “Show Answers in Random Order” if you are using a question that includes “All of the Above” or “None of the Above” as an option.

Image displaying options for formatting a test question.

Once you have entered the question and select your options, click Submit. Repeat these steps to add additional questions for your test.

After creating your questions, you can click and drag the questions to rearrange the order. Hover to the left of a question, then click to drag it up or down.

By default, all questions are worth 10 points. To change the individual point value of each question, enter a number in the Points box on the right.

If you would like to change all of the point values, click on the Select: All link above the first question. Enter a point value in the box, then click Update.

Image displaying options for point values.

Making a Test Available to Students

Once you create a test, the next step is to deploy the test in your course. You can place the test in any content area of your course (e.g., Learning Materials, Assignments).

Here are the steps for deploying a test:

1. Open the Content Area where you would like to place the test.

2. Click on Assessments > Test.

Red box surrounding the Assessments button.

3. Under Add an Existing Test, select a test. Only tests that have not yet been deployed will be shown here.

Image displaying options to Create a New Test or Add an Existing Test.

4. Click Submit.

Managing Test Options 

The Test Options window contains many choices. Read through these options carefully, as they impact how students will access and complete the test.

  1. Enter a name and description for the test.
  2. Under Make the link available, select Yes.
  3. Choose whether you would like to post an announcement about the test.
  4. Multiple Attempts: The default is to allow a single attempt. If you would like to allow multiple or unlimited attempts, check the box here. If you choose a number of attempts (not unlimited), enter a number in the box.
  5. If you allow multiple attempts, choose an option for Score attempts using. Most instructors choose Last Graded Attempt or Highest Graded Attempt.
  6. Force Completion: Check this box if you would like students to complete the test in one sitting. They cannot save and return to it later.
  7. Set Timer: If you would like to set a timer, check the box and enter a number in minutes.
    • Auto-Submit: This option will save and submit the test automatically once the time is up. Very Important: The combination of Force Completion and Auto Submit often causes glitches. It is recommended that you do not choose both options together.Image displaying options for test availability.
  8. Choose a Display After and Display Until date if desired. If you choose a display date, Make the link available must be set to Yes.
  9. To prevent students from accessing the test early (especially if you are having them take it in a computer lab, you can set a password for the test.
  10. If you have students who require accommodations (extra time or attempts, for example), you can set a Test Availability Exception. Visit the Adding Test Exceptions document on the Blackboard Support tab for details about these options.
  11. Due Date: Similar to Blackboard assignments, a due date is optional.
  12. Self-Assessment Options: If you are providing this test for self-assessment practice only, you can choose to hide results from the Grade Center here.
  13. Show Test Results and Feedback to Students: To prevent students from sharing answers before everyone has completed the test, you can limit the availability of test results and feedback here. You can show the results after all tests are submitted or graded, or on a specific date. You can also limit how much feedback they see per question. This allows students to receive feedback while limiting their options to share answers with others.Screenshot displaying options for showing test results and feedback to students.
  14. Test Presentation: These features allow you to modify how the test is delivered to the students. Using these options can help minimize cheating, especially if students are taking the test in the same room.
    • All at Once vs. One at a Time: Displaying the questions all at once allows students to view all questions and answer in the order that they choose. Displaying one at a time requires students to hit a “next” or “back” button to work through the questions. If you click Prohibit Backtracking, students see one question at a time and cannot go back to change their answer once they have already submitted it.
    • Randomize Questions: This presents question to each student in a random order each time the test is attempted. Avoid using this option if you have questions that build off of each other (e.g., their answer to the previous question will help them answer the next question). 
  15. Once you have entered all of your options, click Submit.

If you would like to confirm that you have set up your test correctly, use the Student Preview Mode button in the upper right corner of the course. This allows you to enter the course as a student and attempt the test. Note that if you have limited the availability of the test to specific dates, you will not be able to see the test until the “Display After” date has passed.

Student Preview Mode icon displayed as a circle surrounded by two arrows.


The Blackboard Tests tool can be used for quizzes, longer exams, quick check-ins and other types of assessments. Most questions (except for essay and short-answer) are graded automatically in the Grade Center. To minimize the opportunities for cheating, instructors can randomize questions and answers, set time limits and control the availability of results.

Note: this guide (and other help documents about this tool) use the words “test,” “quiz” and “exam” interchangeably. 


Article ID: 96154
Mon 1/20/20 2:07 PM
Tue 5/11/21 3:02 PM