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Using the Text Blocks Option


The Text Blocks option allows certain characters to be rendered as text instead of LaTeX. This is particularly relevant for use in conjunction with units of measurement, in a scenario where the author does not want to penalise a student for including / excluding a specific unit of measurement from their response.

The Text Blocks section is located in the More Options area of Math Formula, Cloze Math, and Cloze Math with Image questions. 

Configuring Text Blocks 

Click on the blue +ADD button to create a text block. Every time the +ADD button is clicked, a new empty text field will appear. Enter the units of measurement that you wish to be rendered as text in each empty text field. Remember to only enter one unit of measurement per text field. 


Figure 1: Setting up units of measurement to be converted to text blocks.

Text Blocks and Validation

Enter the valid response, including the unit of measurement, in the validation Value field.

It is easy to tell if a unit of measurement is being rendered as text instead of LaTeX, because LaTeX units of measurement are always italicized. In the image below, 'cm' is not italicized, and is therefore being rendered as text.

Lastly, it is important that the Ignore text option is enabled. Turning this option on will accept both '100' and '100cm' from the student; therefore the student will not be penalised for including or excluding the unit of measurement.  


Figure 2: The validation area, using text blocks with the ignore text option turned on.

Normally, when the valid response includes a unit of measurement, the equivValue scoring method must be used as it is the only scoring method that recognises units of measurement. You can still use this scoring method in the example pictured, but it is also possible to use equivSymbolic; this is because the unit of measurement used is being treated as text, so the math engine is unaware that it is a unit of measurement (and does not treat it as such).

In the example above, the question will now accept both '100' and '100cm' as correct answers.


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