Hot Potatoes Online Help and Support Area

Help Pages:
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Technical Support

Storing and Downloading Results

The greatest single benefit of using is the storage of scores from Hot Potatoes exercises. When used in any other context, Hot Potatoes exercises show the student a score when the exercise is complete, but that score cannot be recorded unless the student records it manually. Hot Potatoes users have often asked for a system which will record scores, and is the answer.

Note: scores can only be recorded by students who have a Student Account set up on the server. You set up accounts for your students using the Students option on your Account Management page: see Students for details.

Viewing Your Students' Results

When one of your Students completes an exercise created using Hot Potatoes or TexToys, the results are sent automatically to the server for storage. You can then look at these results in the Account Management Page, and the Student can see their results on their own login page.

When you use the Account Management Page to list the classes, students or exercises stored on the system, you will see a "Results" link at the right-hand end of each row in the list - clicking on this link will show you a list of results for the relevant class, student or exercise. For example, if you choose Classes, you will see Results links like those highlighted on a yellow background below:

Class Name Exercises Students      
1st Year No exercises in this class. 0 Edit Delete Results
2nd Year Things can only get better
Parking is such sweet sorrow
Never Say Never
One Day at a Time
8 send email Edit Delete Results
Final Year

Too Many Cooks
Parking is such sweet sorrow 2
A Really Hard Test

15 send email Edit Delete Results
Create a new class

Clicking this link displays a list of the results submitted for that class, listed in order of the students in the class:

Exercise Results for 'Too Many Cooks'
Student Name Mark Submitted Duration
Fred Smith 68 30 Oct 2001 09:17 0:06:26 More information... Delete
Yoko Fujiyama 83 31 Oct 2001 11:21 0:09:14 More information... Delete
Dipak Patel 76 30 Oct 2001 23:22 0:07:07 More information... Delete
None unsubmitted.
Show Class Results By Exercise


You can click the link at the bottom of this list to see the same results listed in order of the exercise Pages on which they were scored.

Likewise in the Pages and Students areas, you can choose to view results for each exercise Page, or for each Student. A table of results for a particular exercise might look like this:

Exercise Results for 'Too Many Cooks'
Student Name Mark Submitted Duration
Fred Smith 68 30 Oct 2001 09:17 0:06:26 More information... Delete
Yoko Fujiyama 83 31 Oct 2001 11:21 0:09:14 More information... Delete
Dipak Patel 76 30 Oct 2001 23:22 0:07:07 More information... Delete
None unsubmitted.

This shows that three students have each done the exercise once. It shows the date and time at which the exercise was completed, and the time (hours, minutes and seconds) which the student took to complete it. You can click the "More Information" link to see all the information stored for any particular completed exercise, and you can delete each individual result by clicking the Delete link.

"More Information" - The Full Result

The complete result includes a comment which the student can enter after completing the exercise:

Full Exercise Result
Student Name: Fred Smith
Class Final Year
Exercise Title: Too Many Cooks
Exercise Type: Webrhubarb
Submitted: 08 Dec 2001 06:01
Time Taken by Student: 0:04:11
Mark Scored: 68
Student Comments: I found this exercise rather difficult. Don't you have anything easier?
Student's Computer Hostname
Student's Computer IP Address

Likewise you can display all the results scored by a particular student using the Students option.

In some cases, you may see an extra section called "Detailed Results" - this is explained in detail below.

Can Students See The Results?

Your students can see their own results when they log in, but they do not see all the information which the teacher can see, and they are not allowed to see other students' results.

Downloading Results

At the bottom of each list of results, there is a button labelled "Download These Results". If you click this button, the results shown on the page will be generated as a CSV ("comma-separated values") file, and downloaded automatically onto your computer. You can then open the file in a spreadsheet program (such as Microsoft's "Excel"), where you should see all the result information laid out in rows and columns.

You can copy/paste this information into other spreadsheets, or import the CSV file into other programs such as databases or management systems.

"Not Submitted" Results

When you view the results for an exercise or a student, in addition to the recorded marks, the screen may also show two other types of result - "Not Submitted", and "Unfinished".

A "Not Submitted" result is generated when a Student downloads the exercise to begin it, but then disconnects from the server, closes their browser, or uses their Back button to return to their Student page. By doing this, they get to see the questions in the exercise without completing it or submitting a result. This could be used as a simple method of cheating.

It is important to note that Not Submitted results may also be created if the student's internet access is unreliable or intermittent, or if there are server problems - the fact that a student has a Not Submitted result is not proof that they have tried to cheat. But by recording every instance in which an exercise is downloaded but no result is submitted, discourages students from using this technique to gain an unfair advantage over other students.

"Unfinished" Results

When a student downloads an exercise Page from, the system automatically inserts a button at the top of the exercise, labelled "Give Up". If the student clicks this button, instead of waiting until all the questions have been answered, the exercise terminates, and records an "Unfinished" result. The student then has the option to enter a comment for the teacher to read, just as s/he does when completing an exercise in the normal way.

Student Comments

When student complete (or "give up") an exercise, the system offers them the option to enter a comment. This comment is stored along with the exercise result.

These comments are displayed in the Full Exercise Result screen as shown above. You can also see a list of the comments entered by all students for a particular exercise, by choosing the Pages option, and clicking the "Comments" link for the exercise.

Comments from Students for Exercise 'Capitals'
Student Name Comment
Fred Smith That was very difficult.
Fred Smith Easier second time around!

Detailed Results

Some exercise types (eg Quandary) support "Detailed Results", providing you with more information than a simple score. The nature of the information depends on the exercise, and the information displayed in the Detailed Results section should be self-explanatory. For example:

Full Exercise Result
Student Name: Joe Bloggs
Class: Class 1
Exercise Title: Questionnaire: Find your computacy level
Exercise Type: Quandary
Submitted: 19 Feb 2003 17:38
Time Taken by Student: 0:00:34
Mark Scored: 100
Student Comments: Testing submission.
Student's Computer Hostname:
Student's Computer IP Address:
Detailed Results

Click here to see the final position in the maze

Click here to track the student through the maze.

Click here to track the student through the maze with timing data.

The Detailed Results section at the bottom contains links, which you can click to track your student's progress through the Quandary Action Maze.