Algebra/Tex in multiple choice

I am putting together study modules for our Texas state mandated tests in math at the high school level. Moodle has been a very enjoyable experience to work with. A little addicting though.

I am putting quizzes together and have been successful in using the algebra filter in the body of the questions, but as a multiple choice answer the filter does not seem to be functioning. Is this normal, or am I doing something wrong?

An example expression @@4n+12<35@@.

Thanks for your help,

Tom Schaeper

I am putting quizzes together and have been successful in using the algebra filter in the body of the questions, but as a multiple choice answer the filter does not seem to be functioning. Is this normal, or am I doing something wrong?

An example expression @@4n+12<35@@.

Thanks for your help,

Tom Schaeper

Re: Algebra/Tex in multiple choice

tex in multiple choice answers works except when there are some special characters like the greater / less than involved (these seem to be currently taken as html tags).

As a workaround

$$$4n+12$$$ < $$$35$$$

would work to get

$$4n+12$$ < $$35$$

Or if you want to tweak the appearance of the smaller than symbol, you can put

<span style="font-weight:bold;font-size:16pt">$$$4n+12$$$ < $$$35$$$ </span>

Andreas

As a workaround

$$$4n+12$$$ < $$$35$$$

would work to get

$$4n+12$$ < $$35$$

Or if you want to tweak the appearance of the smaller than symbol, you can put

<span style="font-weight:bold;font-size:16pt">$$$4n+12$$$ < $$$35$$$ </span>

Andreas

Re: Algebra/Tex in multiple choice

This same kind of problem has come up earlier, and mimetex now recognizes both < and < for "less than" embedded inside tex math expressions. So you can use the tex filter to write the single uninterrupted expression $$$4n+12<35$$$ (or, apparently, even $$$4n+12&lt;35$$$) to obtain the $$\normalsize 4n+12<35$$ you want. Ditto for > and various other common html special characters discussed in the reference section of the full mimetex manual at http://www.forkosh.com/mimetexmanual.html And if any html special characters you need aren't already there, you can use the -DNEWCOMMANDS switch to add them when you compile mimetex.

Re: Algebra/Tex in multiple choice

Hey John,

Thanks for your support!

I went to the manual and tried out a few expressions in ther test window. I am still learning the Tex syntax. I added your suggestions to my quiz and it looks much better. Also, I made a few changes in my question and it looks much better as well.

When I was a real programmer, our chant was RTFM, Read the ... Manual. Time for me to sally forth and engage the manual.

Displaying math on the web can be a real pain, but your efforts make it a lot easier.

Thanks,

Tom Schaeper

Thanks for your support!

I went to the manual and tried out a few expressions in ther test window. I am still learning the Tex syntax. I added your suggestions to my quiz and it looks much better. Also, I made a few changes in my question and it looks much better as well.

When I was a real programmer, our chant was RTFM, Read the ... Manual. Time for me to sally forth and engage the manual.

Displaying math on the web can be a real pain, but your efforts make it a lot easier.

Thanks,

Tom Schaeper

Re: Algebra/Tex in multiple choice

Hi Tom,

Don't worry about not reading the mimetex manusl (ditto Andreas). I realize it's long and boring, and difficult to find a specific piece of information.

When you say, "I am still learning the Tex syntax," I'd say that mimetex isn't the best way to learn real (La)TeX syntax. For example, the < kludge we discussed isn't recognized by real TeX, nor are various other kludges I programmed into mimetex to accommodate its web-centric focus. And the mimetex manual doesn't always make it clear which features are syntax extensions.

Suppose moodle eventually abandons mimetex in favor of an actual Tex engine, or a Tex-to-MathML converter that only recognizes real Tex, or anything else that only recognizes real Tex. Then if you've only used real Tex in your quizzes, they'll continue to render correctly, transparent to the change. But your < is a mimetex-specific kludge that a real Tex engine will choke on. So the down-side of using < is that you're locking yourself into mimetex.

Andreas' pages might be a better way to learn Tex math. There's also a very short math intro on the two pages

http://www.comp.leeds.ac.uk/andyr/misc/latex/latextutorial9.html

and

http://www.comp.leeds.ac.uk/andyr/misc/latex/latextutorial10.html

The math section of "The not so short introduction to latex", at

http://www.ctan.org/tex-archive/info/lshort/english/

is a somewhat longer introduction. But it's still pretty sparse.

The only adequate discussions I've come across are in books you have to buy. Browse as many as you can and choose the one you personally like best. I'd only suggest you look at "A Guide to LaTeX", Kopka and Daly, Addison-Wesley (I believe it's now in its fourth edition; I have the third, whose math section looks pretty decent).

Don't worry about not reading the mimetex manusl (ditto Andreas). I realize it's long and boring, and difficult to find a specific piece of information.

When you say, "I am still learning the Tex syntax," I'd say that mimetex isn't the best way to learn real (La)TeX syntax. For example, the < kludge we discussed isn't recognized by real TeX, nor are various other kludges I programmed into mimetex to accommodate its web-centric focus. And the mimetex manual doesn't always make it clear which features are syntax extensions.

Suppose moodle eventually abandons mimetex in favor of an actual Tex engine, or a Tex-to-MathML converter that only recognizes real Tex, or anything else that only recognizes real Tex. Then if you've only used real Tex in your quizzes, they'll continue to render correctly, transparent to the change. But your < is a mimetex-specific kludge that a real Tex engine will choke on. So the down-side of using < is that you're locking yourself into mimetex.

Andreas' pages might be a better way to learn Tex math. There's also a very short math intro on the two pages

http://www.comp.leeds.ac.uk/andyr/misc/latex/latextutorial9.html

and

http://www.comp.leeds.ac.uk/andyr/misc/latex/latextutorial10.html

The math section of "The not so short introduction to latex", at

http://www.ctan.org/tex-archive/info/lshort/english/

is a somewhat longer introduction. But it's still pretty sparse.

The only adequate discussions I've come across are in books you have to buy. Browse as many as you can and choose the one you personally like best. I'd only suggest you look at "A Guide to LaTeX", Kopka and Daly, Addison-Wesley (I believe it's now in its fourth edition; I have the third, whose math section looks pretty decent).

Re: Algebra/Tex in multiple choice

John,

just want to mention that there are quite some moodlers who are using your mimeTeX. I am having each day some visitors / guests at emathpool who are consulting the mimeTeX reference. And this doesn't include the ones who have downloaded the documentation in xml.

Andreas

just want to mention that there are quite some moodlers who are using your mimeTeX. I am having each day some visitors / guests at emathpool who are consulting the mimeTeX reference. And this doesn't include the ones who have downloaded the documentation in xml.

Andreas

Re: Algebra/Tex in multiple choice

Hi, Tom.

When the math becomes more advanced, it seems reasonable to upload an auxilary file. For example, some of the questions in my recent algebra quiz are dealing with the plots. To answer those questions, the students are asked to open pdf files generated from any advanced math editor (mathematica in my case) and answer multiple choice questions looking in that file....

well, I tried to upload the file, but it exceeded the allowed size.

You can send your email address to info@bosdli.com, and I will send the file directly. Naturally, such a file can also contain some advanced math formulas.

Best

Michael