Creating a Question Pool

Video Tutorial



What is a Pool?

  • A question pool is a collection of questions that is stored within your Blackboard course for repeated use.
  • The questions from a pool can be added to any test / survey within that course.
  • Question pools are searchable based on question type and if defined-categories, topics, level of difficulty & keywords.
  • Instructors typically use pools to quickly and easily create customized tests.

Creating a Question Pool

Creating a question pool is similar to creating a test. Scroll to Course Management/Course Tools/Tests, Surveys & Pools.

Once that page loads, click on Pools.

On the next page, click on Build Pools.

Give the Pool a name, and if you choose, you could provide a description and instructions.

Then click submit.

When you populate your pool with questions you can create questions manually, much like you did with tests.


For this course, click on Tests below to browse tests for your criteria. Because the only tests we have under Pools, is the one we created. Now choose All Tests in that list. But you could choose each test individually that you want to look at. It then brings up a listing of every single question that you have created in this course.

So if you wanted this pool to pull from all of these questions, you could select the top box to choose all the questions. Making note, that it only chooses all of the questions on this first page. If you wanted to choose the questions from page two, you would navigate to page two. Select the box at the top to select all of those questions. Then click submit. You have now added 26 questions for your question pool. The default points follow over from the questions when they were originally created in the other tests.

When we created these questions, we simply created a question and the answer that was applicable for it. So for our Browse criteria, our only option is to Browse by Question Types. So if you wanted to choose all questions that were Essay. Simply click Essay. Same if you want to just filter Multiple choice etc.

Searching Pools
If you wanted to be able to search your pool based on topics, categories, or levels of difficulty. You need to include that information in the question when you created it.

Creating Questions

If you click on Create Question and choose True/False. Then create your first question.

Scroll down to Categories and Keywords. This section allows you to add Categories, Topics, Levels of Difficulty, and Keywords to each question. So add the following tags to each of these areas below and click ok. You’ll note for any of these items, you can add an additional tag. When you are done, hit Submit.

You will now see when you search Browse Criteria, you have the following choices.

If you want to choose by category/health, it now brings up a list of all of the questions, in this Pool, that is related to health.

This allows you to quickly and easily build a test build a test for students based on the type of questions you’d like see. So if you wanted to ensure you had 10 questions that were easy, 9 questions that were difficult, 8 of the questions were about health and 5 questions were about adults. You could quickly and easily select all of the criteria and choose the questions.

When you are done, you would simply click ok. You now created a question pool that holds 27 questions. When you are ready to build your test to Tests/Assessments/Tests. Then click create.

Give it a name and click submit. Now instead of creating the questions manually, choose Reuse Question/Find questions

You can now search by pool, based on the information you put in. You can choose all of the questions from Pool #1. But if you wanted to further scale that down. For example, search by question type, or by Categories you created, Topics etc.

Click submit once you have chosen the questions you want. This test has now been created with a total of 5 questions. All that is left for you to do is click ok on the bottom right.

Instructions - Creating a Pool Question (PDF)