Using Publisher Materials in Online Courses

Using Publisher Materials in Online Courses

Did you know that many textbooks come with ready to import test banks? Many of the faculty we work with are not aware of this, and are pleasantly surprised to find out how easy it is to bring these materials into their online courses and how time-saving this technique is. Although not all questions in the test banks may satisfy the requirements of be of high quality, faculty can modify the actual tests and quizzes as they see fit. 

Step 1. Look up your textbook

We found the easiest way to look up whether a publisher textbook has a test bank is through the Respondus Test Bank Network, which encompasses multiple publishers and thousands of test banks. Respondus 4.0 is a wonderful exam creation tool on its own, which we will discuss later. For now, however, we will focus on locating and importing ready to use publisher test banks.

Step 2. Download the test bank

Once you locate your textbook, you will be asked to provide your credentials for the publisher website (or to create a new account). The prompts will vary depending on the publisher. Once logged in, you should see multiple download options, including QTI files for multiple LMS systems. All of the most commonly used LMS (Canvas, Blackboard, Moodle and Brightspace D2L) follow the same standards, including  the Question and Test Interoperability (QTI) standard from the IMS Global Learning Consortium, making it possible to import content. However, there may be variations in how content looks once imported. Although you should start with the package listed for your LMS, we found that sometimes (if the process does not work as expected) we had better results with the packages listed for another LMS.

Step 3. Import test banks into your course

This process will vary slightly from LMS to LMS and among different versions of the same LMS. We are including instructions below that should work in most cases. If you have trouble with this process, reach out to the center for teaching and learning at your institution or consider signing up for one of our faculty support packages.

Note that although all of the publisher test banks/questions are now in your course, there may be additional steps required to add them to a particular quiz/test. Once added, you can also modify individual questions as needed.

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