Create a Select Dropdown Item

This lesson will guide you through the process of creating a Select Dropdown Item within the Illuminate Itembank. This allows students the ability to select words to complete a sentence/answer a question via a dropdown menu of choices.

Where to start

Where to start

1. Click on Assessments.

2. Under Itembank,  select Visit Itembank.

Create a New Item

Create a New Item

1. Click Create.

2. Next click New Item.

3. Select Next.

Note: You may also start from the Items tab, then click Create Item.

Select Dropdown

Select Dropdown

1. Item Type- Chose Select Downdown from the dropdown menu.

2. Click Teacher Instructions to type Teacher Instructions (e.g., Read the question aloud to your students) if applicable.

3. Enter the Stem. The stem is the part of an item that presents a problem to be solved, a direct question, or an incomplete statement to be completed, as well as any other relevant information. Use the tool palette for special formatting such as bold, underline, HTML, symbols, math equations, graphs, adding a table, or uploading an image. A spell check tool is also included in the palette.

For Select Downdown questions, note that you must add [dropdown] where you would like the dropdown menu to appear.

4. Click Save and Continue.

Enter Answers

Enter Answers

Now you have to input and set the possible answer choices that will appear in the dropdown menu.

1. Enter the answer choices in the space provided. Answer choices are options a student may pick from in a closed-response (e.g., multiple choice) assessment; these include the correct answer and the distractors.

2. Mark the correct answer by clicking the checkmark. It will turn green indicated this is the correct answer.

3. You may add an additional answer choice by clicking Add Choice.

4. Press Save.



1. Add a performance level to your rubric by clicking Add Rubric Level. If you plan to mark the rubric level on each student's answer sheet for scanning with GradeCam, you may only have up to 5 rubric levels.

2. Enter the rubric performance level criteria.

3. Click the red minus (-) icon next to a criteria that you would like to remove. Use the arrow keys to move the criteria up or down.

4. Click Save once you have finished, then go to the Details tab.

Item Details

1. Choose the bank where the item will belong. The Public item bank is an Illuminate Education community-driven bank where items contained in that bank is accessible to any user. If you only want your item available to you, choose -None-. Districts may create their own banks to add to this list. Please contact customer service for assistance.

2. Select the Language used in the item (i.e., English or Spanish). The red asterisk (*) next to Language indicates this field is required. Mark No or Yes to Exclude Stem from displaying to students. For example, an item may contain a passage that should be read aloud by the test proctor, but should not be included in the test booklet for students to view. The red asterisk (*) next to Exclude Stem indicates this field is required.

3. If the item requires a specific layout format  that should not be changed, pick the Layout Format for the item: 2 Column, 2 Column Table, Full Page, Distractors Side By Side, Distractors Horizontal 2 by 2, Distractors Vertical 2 by 2.

4. Insert a Page Break before or after the question if needed.

5. Reference Material- If a question needs something like a Periodic Table, Formula Sheet, etc. you can add this as an image file and students will be able to access it when answering the question.

6. Click Save, then go to the Standards tab.

Identify Item Standards

Identify Item Standards

1. Select the standards set, subject and the grade level for the standard(s) to which you will be tying to your item. As you select the drop-down menus the standards will be automatically loaded on the page. To find a specific standard by key word or standard code, use the search box then click Search.

2. You can click the arrow symbol to expand the strand or sub-strand and see the standards housed within.

3. Here you can see an expanded selection.

4. Select the standard(s) by clicking on the bolded standard title. Once linked, you will see a chain link show next to the linked standard(s).

5. The standard(s) selected will appear in the Linked Standards area. To remove a standard, click the 'X' next to it. You can continue to search and select more standards as needed.

Preview Item

Preview Item

You may preview your item by going to the Preview tab. The item preview will show the item step, distractor, correct answer (answer option letter is in green), aligned standard code, and other item information.

Note: The preview does not display in the item layout that you may have chosen in the Details step.

Publish Item

Publish Item

Publish is the final step of the item creation process. Prior to publishing, if you would like to make changes to your item, go to the appropriate tab to make your edits. When you are sure that your item is in final form and can be made available to add to assessments, click Publish.

Note: Once an item is published, it will be locked from further editing. To edit the item after it has been published, a new revision must be created.

Also, once an Item is published, you can add it directly to an existing assessment by clicking on the 'Add To' button. This will populate a list of assessments you can add this item to with one click.

View Item Revisions

View Item Revisions

The Revisions tab lists all versions of the item (including the master item), that has been revised once published. Once an item is published and added to an assessment, any further revisions of that item will not be updated in the assessment unless a user clicks on 'Update Assessments using old Item Revisions'. NOTE: If you decide to to this (For example, you realize that the answer choice was actually supposed to be A, not C) it WILL change all student scores associated with that assessment.When adding an item with several revisions to an assessment, the most recent revision will be used. To view an item revision, click on the number.

Next Steps

All of your items, published or not, will be housed in the 'Items' section of the Itembank. See the "Create an Itembank Assessment" lesson to build a test with items. You may also want to see the "Create/Select Quality Assessment" lesson for important assessment design considerations.