UDL guided exam: Choose Your Own Adventure

Do you remember reading Choose Your Own Adventure books?  They were my favorite. I loved making the story my own.  And then in high school, I was always happy to find a a textbook with a student-made adventure written inside to help pass the time. With this as my inspiration and with UDL to guide the way, I delivered a choose-your-own-adventure styled exam this semester. Based upon the results and student feedback, I’ll do it again.

UDL Guided Exam Structure for Marketing

The adventure was short, but included a few key choices.

  • 1 question -> Is a brand’s digital presence healthy or unhealthy?
    • Choose a brand of interest to you
  • 2 evaluation tracks -> evaluate a website or social media
    • No “right” answer
    • Evidence based
  • 2 response format options -> written or oral (recorded)
UDL guided exam structure

Set up and Preparations

This exam format was new to the students, so together we worked through the following items to set us up for success:

  • Parameters
    • Open book
    • Open online resources/tools
    • Collaborate with a friend
    • 1 week to complete
    • Rubric provided
    • Length was flexible
  • Response Strategy
    • We co-created and shared a document that outlined some of the approaches, tools, and content required to respond to the exam question
  • Exam rehearsal
    • Rather than a traditional exam review we worked through an exam rehearsal
    • We worked through the response strategy document
  • Time requirements
    • We worked together to calculate the amount of time required to successfully complete and respond to the question.

Student Feedback

  • Some students liked the exam format because:
    • they appreciated the variety of choice
    • they had a week to complete it
  • Some students found the exam difficult because:
    • they “didn’t know what I was looking for”
    • there was no minimum page expectation identified


  • I’d totally run the exam again in the future considering the students appreciated the choice and felt that they were set up of for success. Many of the responses were interesting, and highly engaging to read and watch.
  • I need to find ways to help those students who were trying to guess “what I was looking for”  sot that they become unstuck from a “teach to the test” mindset. My husband suggested that I consider co-constructing success criteria with students with focused “I statements…” to understand the rubric better. 


In what ways do you provide choice within exams?


This is post 9/9, in participation with ecampusontario’s #9x9x25 challenge  Other recent posts include: Digital Fluency: What’s That?  and Classroom Greetings: I Yearn for a Fancy Handshake 

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