Marking with MFA


Marking with MFA

Multi-format assessments come with built-in capabilities to automatically mark all question types, with the exception of extended response questions.

How does auto-marking work?

Multiple choice and True/false questions

These question types require students to select an answer from a set of options. Cadmus identifies if the student has chosen the correct option as set by you.

If the student chooses the correct answer, they are awarded the full points set for that question in the assessment. If they choose a wrong answer they score 0 points.


  • MCQs and True/false questions can only have one correct answer,
  • There is no negative marking for a wrong answer.

Short answer & fill in the blanks questions

These question types require students to type in a response like a word or a short phrase. Cadmus checks for similarity between the student’s response and the accepted answers specified by you in the assessment.

If the student response meets or exceeds the similarity score required on the question, they are awarded the full points set for that question in the assessment.

Fill in the blanks questions are scored per blank.

  • The total points set for the question are equally divided between the number of blanks in the question.
  • Student responses per blank are scored individually.
  • Points from each blank are combined into the total points scored on the question.

Worked example:

If a question has 4 blanks, and the total points are 8, each blank is worth 2 points. If a student answers 3 out of the 4 blanks correctly, they score a total of 6 points.

Extended response questions

Extended response questions are not auto-marked in MFA. These will need to be marked manually in the designated marking tool, much like classic Cadmus assessments.

How does MFA & auto-marking work with my marking tool?

Multi-format assessments do not disrupt your existing marking workflow. There are some key concepts that help explain how marking in MFA works.

Points total

Cadmus can calculate the total points for an assessment by adding up the points specified for each question. These include all the auto-marked question types as well as the extended response question type. The points total is displayed under the heading of the assessment in the MFA builder.

When using Turnitin Feedback Studio, this points total is automatically passed on to your marking tool as the maximum possible score for your assessment.

This is visible in the assessment settings.

For any other Marking tool, the points total needs to be manually updated in the assignment settings within the LMS.

Automark total vs manual marking

Since an assessment can include both auto-marked and manually marked question types, the overall marks are calculated in two parts as well.

  • Automark total

    This is the total points the student has scored on the automarked questions. When the student submission is viewed in a marking tool, a summary of the scores on the automarked questions is available at the very top.

The total points awarded on auto-marked questions available in this summary is the automark total.

To add these points to the overall student score you can:

  • Manually add these points to the total score in your marking tool, or
  • Create a rubric criteria for the automarked total and use it to input this score. The marking tool will automatically add these points to the total score.

NOTE: If your marking tool doesn’t accept decimal values, you might need to round these points up or down to the nearest whole number.

NOTE: The automark total (student scores on the auto-marked questions) will not be automatically passed on to your marking tool or the LMS grade book.

It will need to be entered manually into the marking tool; either by adding it to the total score, or within a rubric criterion created specifically for it.

A ready summary that includes this total will show up on each individual submission in the marking tool.

  • Manual Marking

    This is the score provided by the markers after evaluating the extended responses within the marking tool.

    Student submissions visible in the marking tool will include all extended responses in addition to the automark summary section.

    Markers can grade these responses as usual, using all features of the marking tool like annotations and comments, etc.

Only one common rubric can be used for all the extended responses.

For assessments with multiple extended responses, the rubric can be set up with a criteria each for every extended response and an additional criterion for the automark total.

Downloading fully auto-marked submissions with responses from Athena

The entirety of a student’s submission along with the auto-marking decisions, scores and extended responses can be downloaded as PDFs from the class list on the Marking tab in the teacher’s view for Cadmus.