Skip to main content

Tests Vs Pools


a screenshot of the Tests, Survey, and Pools menu  

Q: What is the difference between Tests and Pools?

A: A Pool is Blackboard’s name for a test bank or question database. Pools act like repositories for sets or categories of questions. The Pool tool is used to add, import and export, or modify questions before they are added to a Test.

Tests are types of assessments in which questions can be pulled from the Pool. Both Pools and Tests can be imported and exported in Blackboard for reuse.

Q: How do I access Pools?

A: Pools are accessed from the Test, Surveys and Pools area in the Course Tools portion of the Control Panel.

a screenshot of the Course Tools drop down menu and the Tests, Survey, and Pools option is selected  

Q: How do I use a Pool?

A: First, create the Pool.

1. From Control Panel > Tests, Surveys and Pools, click Pools.

a screenshot of the Pools option in the Tests, Survey, and Pools screen  

2. Click on the Build Pool button in the upper left corner.

3. Enter a name, description, and instructions (if any) for the Pool and then click Submit.

a screenshot of the Build Pool button  

Next, you may manually add questions to the Pool. (Alternatively, you can upload questions using
Blackboard’s Upload Tool, a Testbank Creation Tool such as TestGen, or from a Word Document using Respondus.)

To manually create questions:

1. Point to Create Question.

2. Select a question type from the menu.

a screenshot of the Create Question drop down menu  

3. Enter question title and text and choose options.

a screenshot of the Questions Test and Question Options fields  

4. Enter answers that are required by the question type. Use the radio button to select the correct answer.

5. Provide feedback and/or other options, if desired.

6. Provide Categories, Levels of Difficulty, Topics, or Keywords to enhance searching capabilities.

7. Once you have finished creating your question, click Submit.

8. Repeat to add additional questions to your pool.

Q: How do I add questions from a Pool to a Test?

A: The Reuse Question button allows you to use questions from a Pool in a test you are creating.

1. Click the Action Link and select the option to Edit the Test (or create one if necessary).

a screenshot of the Test Action menu and the Edit the Test option  

2. Point to Reuse Questions and then select Find Questions from the drop-down menu.

a screenshot of the Reuse Question drop down menu and the Find Questions option is selected  

3. A new window will open. Select the Pool you would like to choose your question(s) from by clicking the Pools filter on the left.

4. Select the Pool you would like to pull the question(s) from.

a screenshot of the Pools section of the Find Questions screen  

5. Check the box of the question(s) you would like to add to your Test and then click Submit.

a screenshot of the check boxes to select questions and the Submit button  

6. The question(s) from the Pool will be added to the Test.

Q: If I change a question in a Test does the question change in the Pool?

A: If you modify a question in a Test, it will not update that question in your Pool. If you want to permanently change a Pool question, be sure to modify it in the Pool. If you were to modify a question in the Pool, those changes would be reflected in the question as it appears in the Test.

1. Edit a question by entering the Pool and then clicking the Action Link for the question you would like to edit.

a screenshot of the questions screen with the Edit option selected  

2. Edit the question and then click Submit.

a screenshot of the Edit Questions fields  

For additional support, visit