College of Natural Science at The University of Texas at Austin
Quest Learning and Assessment
Help - Instructions for Students

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Getting Started

View the FAQ for students

a) Obtain a UT EID


b) Make sure your browser is supported


c) When you view "My Courses", if you don't see any courses listed, click "Enroll in new course".  

Obtain the unique number for your class from your instructor and enter this when prompted.  Your instructor will be notified that you want to register, and you will see a status message indicating that your enrollment is pending. 


d) Viewing and submitting your assignment

Choose My Courses to view your course listings, and then choose a course to see the assignments associated with that course.  Click on an individual assignment to see questions and a form to submit your answers.  Questions have many different variations, so your assignment will be different from another student in your class. All assignments have due dates and your instructor has the option of displaying a solution after the due date has passed.


*** Email your instructor with all Quest issues. ***



a) Significant digits and precision The computer carries out all calculations to at least six significant digits. Do not use "significant figures" algorithms to round off your answer. Do not round off 'intermediate' calculations. Six digits are shown in solutions. To be scored as correct, an answer must be within 1% of the computer's answer (except for an answer of zero, which must be exact). You will be informed of any exceptions to this tolerance.


b) Scientific/Engineering notation ("times 10 to the power") Very large or very small numbers may be input with "scientific notation," e.g., +3.56e-10, which is 3.56 times ten to the negative tenth power. However, 468 (or 468.0) is just as good as +4.68e+02 or +4.68E+02.


Constants and Conversion Factors


Be aware that using conversion factors and/or constants not identical with those used by the algorithm in the computer may cause discrepancies (e.g., using pi = 3.14 instead of pi = 3.14159265358979324). In general, constants other than those given in the links below should be given in the question by the instructor.


Constants  |  Conversion Factors



Number of Tries Allowed for Web submission


You will be told immediately whether your answer is correct or not. If your answer is incorrect, you are provided additional opportunities (multiple tries) to get the correct answer, as follows:


a) Multiple-choice questions:  You are allowed n - 1 tries, where n = "number of choices."


b) Numeric questions:  On "numeric" questions (you input the number itself), you are allowed seven tries.



Quizzes using a bubble  sheet


Quiz percent scores are usually lower than homework percent scores because: 1) limited time; 2) no multiple tries; and 3) no help. Quiz scores generally average between 40% and 70%.


a) Instructions for bubble sheet (scan sheet) entry

Quiz answers are collected using a bubble sheet (special form) which is green, has columns for the EID and has ten choices per question. These bubble sheets require the questions to be multiple choice. This method of collection has no interactive response mechanism, thus lacking the ability for immediate right/wrong feedback or multiple tries.


  • Use a #2 (or softer) pencil.
  • Make sure all erasures are thorough.
  • If any part of the bubble sheet becomes defective, get a new bubble sheet from your instructor.


b) Version numbers

The 3-digit number at the top of your quiz is your version number. Make sure that the version number on each page of your quiz is the same as on your bubble sheet. If not preprinted for you, this version number is to be bubbled onto your bubble sheet. If you are using the CPS IR clickers to input answers instead of bubble sheets, there is a special modulo 5 version number printed in the preamble for the exam (V1:0, V2:1, etc.).




a) Homework

All students have the same generic question; however, each student has different parameters and hence different answers. The order of the choices are scrambled from version to version.


b) Quizzes

The order of the choices are scrambled from version to version. Multiple choice questions can differ from version to version.




a) Multiple-choice questions

A randomly guessing student should, on average, receive the same score as a student who does not answer. Our multiple-choice scoring scheme corrects for random guessing by giving negative scores for incorrect answers. (The SAT does this also.) This scheme makes haphazard guessing a waste of time, which will not improve (or help) your score over the long run.


If you are not sure of the correct answer, but you can eliminate one or more of the choices as wrong, you increase your chances of selecting the correct answer. Statistically, it is to your advantage to answer such a question.


The table below illustrates how the neutral scoring scheme works for a +10.00 point question. The table is subdivided into three blocks, which represent the number of choices for a particular multiple choice question: Block 1 (10 choices); Block 2 (6); and Block 3 (3 choices). Each block includes three columns: Try represents the number of times a question is attempted; Correct represents the question score if answered correctly on this particular attempt; and Incorrect represents the question score if answered incorrectly on this and all previous attempts. For example, when you select the correct choice on the first try, you receive full credit; a score of +10.00. If your answer is incorrect (on a 10 option question), however, you are penalized and you receive a negative score of -1.11 (at least until you try again).


Question with 10 choices
Question with 6 choices
Question with 3 choices
Try Correct Incorrect Try Correct Incorrect Try Correct Incorrect
1 +10 -1.11 1 +10 -2 1 +10 -5
2 +7.78 -2.22 2 +6 -4 2 0 -10
3 +5.56 -3.33 3 +2 -6
4 +3.33 -4.44 4 -2 -8
5 +1.11 -5.56 5 -6 -10
6 -1.11 -6.67
7 -3.33 -7.78
8 -5.56 -8.89
9 -7.78 -10




b) Numeric questions using web submission

For more than one try, the full credit score is multiplied by 0.93 ^ (t - 1), where "t" is the number of tries that you use, and the "^" is notation for "to the power of." (Note: 0.93 ^ 0 = 1.)


c) Assignment Weighting

Overall grades are weighted by assignment type. Choosing Grade summary will show you the weighting your instructor is using.



Report issues with questions


Questions are created and improved by instructors. Your instructor is responsible for the questions that he or she selects for your assignments. If a question appears to have issues, ask your instructor to report it and please make a suggestion to improve the question.


*** Email your instructor with Quest issues. ***


How to Obtain a UT EID

A UT EID will allow you to log into multiple classes in the system. To obtain your EID, go to the EID page and select the "get a UT EID" option. Follow the directions provided there. (You MUST accept all cookies in order to communicate with the EID web pages.) If the system tells you that an EID already exists with your last name and birthdate, you may already have an EID. Follow the instructions provided by the system. Please store the EID and password in a safe place.

** NEVER create a second EID. **

To reset your password: EID self help tools

Minimum Browser Requirements

The UT EID System and Quest require a standards-compliant web browser with support for SSL and with Javascript and cookies enabled. It is strongly recommended that you use the latest available version of Google Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Internet Explorer.