Multiple Selection question
Neta Raz Studnitski avatar
Written by Neta Raz Studnitski
Updated over a week ago

Multiple Selection questions allow more than one correct answer.

Create a Multiple Selection question

  1. Click on the blue + button

  2. Choose "Multiple Selection" from the Question types

  3. Type a question, edit the choices, and specify the correct answers by clicking on the squares to the left!

Adjust question settings

Answer Choice Explanations are immediate feedback notes teachers can add to answer choices that help their students understand any misconceptions they may have as soon as their score is returned.

Students will not be able to submit their work without providing an answer

Switch scoring method for this question from auto-grading to a rubric based grading.

Switch on the ability to allow Partial Credit* for Multiple Selection question types to take auto-grading up a notch by allowing your students to get credit for answering part of the question correct. (Find out more about how Partial Credit grading works for Multiple Selection questions below.)

Add a whiteboard style box for your students to showcase their work

You can also add hints for your students, and tag your question to standards.

Randomize Order (Gold plan only)

If you are in a school on the Gold plan you can also randomize* the order of the answer choices to mix things up a bit.

Note: When randomizing the order, the randomization will appear only on the students' end. The teacher's version will remain in the original order, including within the Preview mode. The responses tab for the teacher will also present the answers in the original order.

Strikethrough feature

Your students will have the option to eliminate incorrect answers by using the strikethrough feature. Please note that this feature is only available at the moment. If a student used the strikethrough and then navigated outside of the assignment, when they return the strikethrough markings will be gone and only the correct answer that was check marked will be preserved.

NEW! Quick Math Button

Are you using the Math Keyboard to enter answer choices often? Formative now offers the option to add a Math Button to the answer choice fields within several question types, inlucing Multiple Selection questions, for quicker access to the Math Keyboard.

This will eliminate the need to repeatedly click on the little plus button and choose the Math Keyboard from the dropdown menu.

To enable access to the quick math button:

  1. Click on "My Account" from the left side menu, and then "Settings"

  2. Locate the field "Show math keyboard in answer choices" and toggle it ON

Once this setting is toggled on, you will see a Math Button added next to the little plus button within your answer choice fields. Clicking this button will immediately bring up the Math Keyboard.

*Partial Credit

How we grade the "Allow Partial Credit" feature in Multiple Selection questions

When toggling on "Allow Partial Credit"** you can choose between subtracting points for incorrect answers, or not subtracting points for incorrect answers.

If you choose to subtract points for incorrect answers the formula will be:

Let's take a look at an example of how this works in practice.

Here is a Multiple Selection answer key:

Here are some examples of student responses to this Multiple Selection question, along with their auto-graded scores.

Student A

Student B

Student C

If you choose not to subtract points for incorrect answers:

Let's take a look at an example of how this works in practice.

Here is the same Multiple Selection answer key as before:

Here are the same examples of student responses to this Multiple Selection question, along with their auto-graded scores, when choosing not to subtract points for incorrect answers.

Student A

Student B

Student C

Please note: features marked with an asterisk* are available with a Silver/Gold plan. Want access to these Features? Find out more here.


Based on consistent feedback from teachers and students, on June 16, 2023 we have updated how partial scoring calculates for Multiple Selection questions.

Previously, the point value of the question is distributed across all answer choices (correct or incorrect). After the update, the point value is distributed across the correct answers only. This update brings these question types' Partial Credit formula in alignment with the way Partial Credit is calculated for all other question types on the Formative platform.

🙋🏽‍♀️ What to expect now that the new formula is in effect?

The new partial credit formula is the default for any new formatives created, as well as any existing formatives when assigned to new students/classes.

🙋🏻 What will happen to my previously graded formatives?

As long as no new activity is registered for a previously graded question, the scores granted in the past will not change. However, if a new activity is registered on a specific question (i.e. a new response by a student, an edit of a previously entered response, assigning the same formative to additional students, etc.) the scores previously granted will adjust to reflect the new formula.

If you want your old scores to be saved unchanged yet assign the same formative to new students/classes we recommend duplicating the formative and assigning the new clone to new students/classes instead.

🙋🏿‍♂️ My students' scores on a formative changed, why?

If a new activity is registered to an already graded Multiple Selection, Categorize, Hot Text or Hot Spot question that had "Partial Credit" toggled on, the Partial Credit algorithm will default to the new formula. Your students' scores on these questions changed because a new activity was registered - either one of the students provided a new response, edited an existing response, or the formative was assigned to new students.

What's Next?

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