This article highlights the D2L options for promoting academic integrity for online final exams. Remember, these options are not foolproof, but can help secure your online finals. The options below are listed from least restrictive to most restrictive and can be stacked to further increase exam security.


Please note D2L refers to their testing tool as “Quizzes.” This article will use the terminology “quiz” for consistency with the D2L learning environment. However, you can call the quiz an “exam” in the quiz title.

Short Quiz Availability Windows

The Availability Start Date and End Date control when students can begin taking a quiz. A student can start their quiz at any time during this availability window. The availability window does not affect the quiz time limit. There are three availability options:

  • Start Date: the date and time quiz availability begins.
  • End Date: the date and time quiz availability ends.
  • Due Date: the date and time the quiz is due. Students can continue to submit quiz attempts after the due date, but the attempt will be marked as “late.”


For the most control over exam access, a Start and End Date are recommended. A 5-10-minute window at the start of the scheduled exam period should provide students adequate time to begin their quiz. A short window of opportunity can help ensure all students are taking the quiz during the same time frame and reduce potential question/answer sharing among students in the class.


If a student requires a different Start or End date, you can control access individually via Special Access.


Aggressive Quiz Timing

The Timing settings control how long students have to complete a quiz attempt after the attempt is started. The timer functions independently from the quiz availability date and time. A student can start their quiz at any time during the availability window and still have the full-time limit to complete their quiz.


The “Enforced Time Limit” option is recommended to limit the time allotted to complete the quiz. You can specify the time limit and grace period. A grace period of at least 1 minute is required.


When enforcing a time limit, you need to specify the behavior once the time limit is reached. The “prevent the student from making further changes” option is recommended to prevent students from continuing in the quiz after the time limit is exceeded. When the timer expires, the only available option for students is to submit the quiz.


An aggressive time limit can be one of the most powerful tools for promoting exam integrity. An extended quiz time provides students opportunity to look up each question before responding. A more aggressive time limit requires students to have a prior understanding of the material in order to get through the entire quiz in the time allotted.


Some students may have DSO requests requiring additional time on assessments. You can provide additional time for individual students via Special Access.


Shuffle Questions

Shuffling questions at the quiz level is an easy way to randomize the order questions appear in each attempt. With this option, students receive all questions in the quiz, but in a random order.


Limit the Number of Questions Per Page

Limiting the number of questions that display per page, coupled with shuffling questions, decreases the likelihood that multiple students receive the same question(s) on each page of the quiz. A general recommendation is 1-3 questions per page.


Quiz paging can also be a tool to customize the quiz experience. For example, you might display multiple choice questions 3 per page, but have short answer or written responses questions display 1 question per page.



Once configured, a purple line between questions indicates a page break. You can manually add and remove page breaks by clicking the on the lines between the questions.


Prevent from Moving Backwards

When the “prevent moving backwards through pages” option is enabled, students will only be able to move forward through quiz pages. They will not be able to go back to a previous page once they have left it.


Adding this option to a quiz with a low number of questions per page and shuffling the questions will further prevent students from taking a team approach to an exam.


Question Pools

D2L Question Pools allow instructors to create a library of possible questions from which the quiz selects a random subset for each attempt. This ensures students receive a unique set and order of questions. A large question pool combined with a limited number of questions per quiz page is one of the best methods for promoting quiz integrity.