Working with alternative answers

Hi, I’m learning as I go trying to make some maths and science courses for kids I tutor. I’ve started with times tables which I thought would be simple. I have word (eg 24) answer (eg 2x12). I have the course divided into levels according to the times table, so this example would be in the 2x level. I have it set to test on word prompt on definition, but it seems to come up with either 2x12 or 24 - which I love - needs to be random for the kids to learn it both ways. The problem arises with alternative answers - if prompted with 24 sometimes the options are 2x12 as well as 4x6. I’ve tried adding all alternatives (including 12x2) to the definition field but the program doesn’t seem to accept anything other than the original answer.
I really do like the way memrise works - its incredibly effective - and I could just tell the kids to ignore the answers when marked wrong if they know they are right but it bothers me and I’d like the courses to look more slick.
So, what am I doing wrong? Any help gratefully received - please bear in mind that I’m not very techy! Thanks, Alison

I think that you have to have “mark typing strickly” turned of. You can find that if you go to the course -> edit -> database -> click on the pencil that comes up when you hover over a colomn heading -> testing
Make sure that it’s not ticked.
If it isn’t ticked and the problem persists, then I can’t help, sorry.

That doesn’t work I’m afraid - in fact I switched off type answering anyway - so that isn’t even an option. I’ve tried it differently now and put “2x12” as the word and “24” as the definition and made multiple defintions ie *12x2", this now reads correctly in the learning part where the 2x12 and 12x2 are together and the 24 is below the line. But it still will not accept the alternative as an answer. Thanks for trying though!

One thing it does now do is highlight more correct answers… so if quizzed on 2x12 I I hit 24 it will also highlight a second 24 before moving on to the next question (if two 24s are available in the answers).


To get what you are looking for, I think it may be necessary to use a combination of “alts” and ‘reversed levels’.

Would something like this work for you:

I have added you as a ‘contributor’ so that you can go into the ‘edit course’ areas and see what settings I have used. I have only reversed one level (to show how it looks). Levels can be re-positioned by dragging so that, for example, you could have all your reversed levels together at the end of the course.

Feel free to play around with it as much as you want. If it’s no help, I can ‘bin’ it.

Good luck!

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Thank you for doing that! I have done a similar work around - but the times tables get smaller as a student works through them - I have removed any reference to 12x2 leaving only 2x12. However, without having the alternative answer I end up with a problem with things 4x6 and 3x8 which may only materialise during a classic review of soething like that. It may just mean that a student has to put up with getting an answer wrong, but if there is a solution I’d love to know before I create a load more courses and then discover it later on and have to rebuild them! Thanks once again.

Yes, the opportunity to answer with the 4x6 and 3x8 alternatives to the12x2 answer only comes up during a classic review, not during the learning cycle. I think that’s ok and reduces the number of incorrect answers.

Like you, others have made their levels reduce in size as they progress, for example:

Fully populated levels - with all the alts included - might be worth a try.

Good luck!

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Hi @alisonmb7,

Another way might be to put pairs of question and answer into their own two unique columns.

Create a new level for each times table - 2 , 3, 4 etc.

You could then add a few dummies that have nothing to do with any of the possible questions - eg for the 2 x table (level) pair answer ending in an odd number.

These dummies do not need to be shown in the level - as I think MemRise will pick them up as alternatives just for the alternatives to be presented.

So for a times table that goes up to 12 will need 12 levels and 12 pairs or 24 columns in all.

Children then need to learn and revise a level at the time.

Hard work but it might achieve what you want. :wink:

It is very hard to correct a course because of the problem of Phantom entries persisting!

It is safer to remake the course and delete the old one.

Yes, phantoms - I have come across that one quite quickly! As far as I can see from these replies there are work arounds but the alternative answer thing just doesn’t do what I think it should do, is that right?
Because I ultimately want my kids to learn all their times tables randomly I want them to be doing the classic reviews of all the levels which will mean there will be clashes with 3x8 and 2x12 etc. But it looks like I may just have to put up with it. Thanks very much, really appreciate all the replies.

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Hi @alisonmb7 The only thing I can add further - knowing your requirement - is perhaps to find a way to add a comment - seen at test - so that they know that the alternatives are NOT what you want.

You can set a column to always show at tests (this is with languages in mind) but if you say “12 x table” or “3 times table” etc, then that would achieve it.

(BTW when replying, if you want one or both of us to see your comment add our @ and name or do a reply. I have done both.)

That’s good, I will look into it. I did find a way of working around the same problem with trig values, where the number 1 could come from sin cos or tan etc. I did this by using images and having sin cos or tan in the corner. Doesn’t give too much info away but does direct the student to the correct “1” if two appear in the answers. I think this is similar to what you are suggesting and could save me time with making three almost identical images. So nice! I’ll look into it.

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