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Composite items

A composite item refers to an item that combines multiple components within the single item. The example composite item below consists of an item stem (the text with the blue background) and two components we call ‘Interactions’. The first interaction is a multiple choice and the second interaction is an extended text item type.

Create a composite item

Navigate to Design > Questions.

Select Actions > Add Composite Question.

Complete the form and save, most of the fields are self-explanatory, see the screen capture below for an example.

Scoring modes

Single Correct Response – Requires the candidate to get all interactions correct to successfully complete the question. The system does not allow you to weight questions with this scoring type.

Multiple graded responses – In this mode you can assign a weight to each interaction. If you select this option, you will need to add a min and max score. In this example we have two interactions, so we’ll assign 1 point to each interaction, making the max score 2.

Add item body (stem)

In the Item Body expandable, either select the pencil icon or the link to Create one now.

Enter your content into the Item Body and Save.

Create interactions

Next, we need to create the interactions. The interactions are the questions within the composite item.

In the Item Interaction expandable, either select the pencil icon or the link to Create one now.

Complete the form as required. In the example below we’re using a multiple-choice item type. You can read more about the available item types and how to use them in our document on question types.

Note: Take note of the Add Prompt button as we’ll cover this a little later in the document.

To add additional interactions, select the + button at the top right of the Item Interactions expandable.

We’ve added a second interaction behind the scenes with a question type of extended text.

Let’s take a look at how this item displays to test-takers.

Composite item prompts

You have the option to add a stem to each interaction using the Prompt.

Go back into you interaction by selecting it. Select Add Prompt. 

Enter a stem as in the example below. Repeat that for all interactions.

Let’s take a look at how the composite item with prompts displays to test-takers. In this example, it’s a better user experience for test-takers as the related tasks are above the respective items.

Add interactions to the item body

An option is available to insert existing interactions into the body of the item, which gives you the flexibility of adding content around the interactions. This gives you enhanced design and layout options. You could achieve a similar outcome with the prompt, but the body editor has a few more features such as the ability to insert links, tables, special characters, etc.

Open the Item Body in edit mode.

Select Insert > Insert Interaction.

Select the required interaction and OK. Repeat this for other interactions if required.

You can now add content above and below the interactions. In this example we’ve added a pdf between the two interactions.

This is how it displays to test-takers.

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