How do I unlock assessments / tests and surveys for my students?


This article describes the steps to prepare, administer, and review student answers for multiple choice assessments in's CS Principles course. The same steps should be used to unlock lessons with surveys used in both our CS Principles and CS Discoveries courses. 


Why are certain lessons locked inside some courses?

Certain lessons in the's CS Discoveries and CS Principles courses are locked by default, because they contain surveys or assessments that we want students to take only if a teacher explicitly unlocks the lesson for them. In the case of our CS Principles course, each chapter of lessons in a unit typically culminates in a practice Performance Task and a short multiple choice assessment. Both courses make use of surveys that are also sometimes locked so they can be administered at the appropriate time.

Where are the multiple choice assessments and surveys?

The chapter culminating multiple choice assessments appear inline on the Unit overview pages, generally at the end of the chapter. For example, in Unit 1: The Internet, there are 2 assessments. This Unit also contains a pre-survey at the top. You can identify locked multiple choice assessments and surveys by the "Lock Settings" button on the right-hand of the lesson in the blue teacher section:


Help! I don’t see those surveys/assessments

Ensure you are registered on Code Studio as a “Verified” teacher account to see these surveys/assessments.

Anyone can create a teacher account on Code Studio, which means that we need an extra layer of authorization to allow CS Principles teachers to see assessments, answer keys, and any other collateral that students should not be able to trivially get access to. 

Please fill out this form to request access.



I’m ready for students to take the assessment or survey. How do I unlock the lesson?

We’ll walk through the example of administering the Unit 1 Chapter 1 assessment that follows Unit 1 Lesson 7. To unlock the lesson for students:

  1. Navigate to the Unit overview page:
  2. Scroll to the assessment lesson and click ‘Lock Settings’
  3. The lock settings dialog will appear. If you don't have a section already selected, first select a section from the dialog. This should then show you something like this:
  4. At the top of the dialog, make sure the section from the dropdown is the one that you want to administer the survey/assessment to.
  5. Assessments can be in one of 3 states for students:
    • Locked: The assessment is locked and questions are not visible
    • Editable: The assessment is unlocked and questions can be answered by students
    • Answers visible: Students cannot make changes to their answers but can see the actual answers. This state is useful for allowing students to check their work after the assessment has been administered. This state does not apply to surveys where there are no right answers.
  6. Click the orange ‘Allow editing’ button to toggle all of the students in your section to the "Editable" state, or use the ‘Individual student control’ table to make the assessment editable for only a subset of students.
  7. Click ‘Save.’
  8. Your students will need to refresh the Unit overview page that they are on. After refreshing, the lesson will no longer display a lock, and they can complete and submit the assessment or survey. Students are provided instructions on how to navigate the assessment at the beginning of the assessment. Ensure that students click the purple ‘Submit’ at the end of the assessment period so you can review answers. Clicking 'Submit' will also lock the assessment for the student so they cannot go back and change their answers.

The class period is over. How do I lock the assessment so students can’t see or share it?

To re-lock the assessment so it is no longer viewable by students:

  1. Return to the Unit overview page
  2. Scroll to the assessment, and click the ‘Lock Settings’ button again. Ensure you select the right section from the dialog. 
  3. Click the ‘Lock stage’ button to lock for all students, or use the ‘Individual student control’ table to change the state for only some students.
  4. Click 'Save.'

If you forget to re-lock the lesson, Code Studio will automatically lock it after 24-hours. This is to prevent students from potentially accessing and distributing the questions to others. Note that the lesson will also lock as soon as the student submits the assessment or survey.

What if a student was absent during the class period?

You can unlock the assessment for individual students. Follow the same steps as unlocking the assessment for the entire class, except instead of clicking the "Allow editing" button in the assessment dialog, use the "Individual student control" table to mark the assessment editable for only a subset of students: 


Make sure to hit "Save" at the bottom of the dialog. In the example above, the student 'Amy Cox' can now take the test but Alice and Andrew cannot.



Where can I see student answers?

Student answers are aggregated in the corresponding section in your dashboard and are available to download as a .csv file for easier grading.

  1. Re-open the Lock Settings dialog, ensure the correct section is selected in the dropdown at the top, and click the ‘View Section’ button next to step 5assessment-view.png
  2. This will take you to the purple ‘Assessments/Surveys’ tab on the Teacher Home Page:
  3. Select the Unit that the assessment appeared in. In our example, we’d select Unit 1: The Internet:
  4. On the page, two tables will appear:
    • Assessment summaries table: For each student in the section, the number of correct answers and the % correct is summarized.
    • All assessment answers table: A row for every student and every question/response in the assessment is shown.

Note that for surveys, you will only see aggregate results for multiple choice questions. You will see each individual free response answer, but without the student's name attached to the response. At least 5 students must have submitted the survey for you to see the results. This is to ensure anonymity. 

How can I let my students review their answers?

You can let your students review their answers without letting them change their answers. To do this, go back to the "Lock settings" dialog for the given assessment. Choose the "Show answers" button in Step 5 to move everyone to the "Answers visible" column. You can also do this for a subset of students through the "Individual student control" table by choosing the "Answers visible" column. Make sure to hit Save!



I unlocked an assessment/survey but my students still cannot access the assessment/survey. What is going on? 

Make sure you have unlocked the assessment for the right section of your students by looking at the "Lock settings" dialog for the right assessment. Scroll down to the "Individual student control" table and make sure your students are in the "Editable" column. Common mistakes include:

  • Unlocking the assessment for the wrong section
  • Forgetting to hit "Save" at the bottom of the dialog
  • Unlocking the assessment too early - the assessment gets auto-locked in 24 hours. 
  • Adding a student *after* unlocking the lesson. 

You should also make sure that you have not hidden the individual lesson or the unit (separate from lock settings). Read more about hiding lessons and units here.


Why does the assessment auto-lock in 24 hours? What if I want to give my students longer for the assessment?

We want to auto-lock assessments in order to prevent our questions and answers from leaking so we can prevent cheating. If you really need to give your students longer than 24 hours, you will need to explicitly unlock the assessments after 24 hours. 


My student discovered the URL for the assessment. Does this mean they can access the assessment even though it is locked?

If your student tries to go to an assessment while it is locked by directly going to the right URL, we will just show them this message:

This means your student should never be able to actually take a locked assessment or survey.


My students have started submitting their surveys but I cannot see the responses in the "Assessments/Surveys" tab. What is going on?

Make sure that at least 5 students in your class have submitted the survey. In order to ensure that survey responses stay anonymous, we do not display aggregate results for surveys unless at least 5 students have submitted the survey. 


I tried locking the assessment but I am still getting a message in my teacher panel that there are still unlocked assessments. Why?

Check to make sure that there are no users in your section with a verified teacher account. Because you cannot lock an assessment for a verified teacher, the assessment will always remain unlocked for them and therefore appear unlocked. 

How can I let my students re-do an assessment or survey?

You can just re-unlock that assessment or survey, and any subsequent attempt a student makes will overwrite their previous attempt!


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