Fill in the Blanks Tutorial

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The Fill in the blanks allows eLearning designers to create cloze tests. Portions of words or sentences are removed from a text and the learner is asked to replace the missing text. 

In this tutorial you will learn:

  • When to use Fill in the blanks
  • How to create Fill in the blanks

Example

Here’s the Fill in the blanks we’ll create in this tutorial

When to use Fill in the blanks

Fill in the blanks cen be used effectively in language learning. A Fill in the blanks test asesses the learner’s ability to understand context, vocabulary or grammatical concepts in order to correctly replace the missing pieces of text.

In addition to native and second language learning, Fill in the blanks can be used to test the learner’s ability to reproduce facts or mathematical inferences.  

Fill in the blanks can be used stand-alone or they can be used in Question sets, Interactive videos or Presentations. Either way, they are created in the same way. 

Step 1: Topic

In this tutorial, we’ll use trivial facts about strawberries, English grammar and arithmetics to create a Fill in the blanks.

We’ll use these three sentences:

  1. Insert the correct plural form of the noun strawberry: strawberries
  2. The strawberry is a juicy, edible fruit that has a red color when it is ripe. 
  3. Tom has 2 strawberries. Jill gives him 4 more strawberries. Now, Tom has 6strawberries.

We’ll test the learner by removing the words highlighted with bold text above. These will be our blanks.

Step 2: Creating a Fill in the blanks

Select the New content option and choose Fill in the blanks from the list of Content types: 

Step 3: Fill in the blanks editor

The Fill in the blanks question editor should now appear. The editor looks like this:

In this tutorial, we’ll focus on creating the Fill in the blanks content. The content creation happens in the top part of the editor, so this part of the editor will be our focus here.

The Fill in the blanks editor consists of Task description and Text blocks.

Step 4: Task description 

In the Task description field, we give the learner basic instructions or introduce the problem to be solved.

We’ll use this text for the Task descriptionInsert the missing words or expressions.

Step 5: Text blocks

Under Text blocks, we add our three sentences and define which words are to be removed for the learner to identify.

We can add multiple text blocks, and we can remove multiple words in each text block. 

By default, only a single Text block is displayed when you create a new Fill in the blanks.

Because we have three sentences, we would like to add two more Text blocks. Press the Add text block button twice to add two more Text blocks

In the top Text block, we add the following sentence under Line of text:

Insert the correct plural form of the noun strawberry: strawberries

We insert asterisks before and after the word, we would like to remove, like this:

Insert the correct plural form of the noun strawberry: *strawberries*

In the screenshot above, we have used the text formatting toolbar to highlight strawberry in italics.

Add the following text in the second Text block, under Line of text

The strawberry is a juicy, edible fruit that has a *red* color when it is ripe. 

In the third and bottom Text block, we add the following text under Line of text:

Tom has 2 strawberries. Jill gives him 4 more strawberries. Now, Tom has *6* strawberries.

In this last sentence, we want to allow the learner to insert both the number 6 as well as the word six.

We can define alternative answers by using a slash to separate the accepted alternative answers inside the asterisks, like this:

Tom has 2 strawberries. Jill gives him 4 more strawberries. Now, Tom has *6/six* strawberries.

You should now have something like this:

You can add as many Text blocks as you want. You remove Text blocks by pressing the  button in the top right corner of the Text block. You change the order of the Text blocks by pulling the  button in the top left corner of the Text block.

If you need instructions on how to create content you can press the “Show instructions” button at any time and the instructions block will open. It looks like so:

Step 6: Try again button

Check the Enable “Try again” button checkbox to allow the learner to solve the Fill in the blanks multiple times.

If you include Fill in the blanks in Question sets, Interactive videos, or Presentations, you might want to consider whether you want the user to only get one chance to solve the task.

In this tutorial, we’ll leave this option checked.

Step 7: Case Sensitive

In this tutorial, we are not concerned whether the learner uses capital letters or not when inserting the missing text. We, therefore, uncheck the Case sensitive checkbox. Example: The learner will get the correct answer when inserting both Strawberries and strawberries in the first sentence.

Step 8: Finishing up 

Save the node/article to view your finished Fill in the blanks
You should now have the same result as the example on top of this page.  

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