Section-based testing allows you to organize the test into different logical categories known as sections.
We recommend that every section tests a candidate on a particular concept or type of question. This makes the test more organized and divides the entire test into different topics or themes for testing.
For example, if you are interviewing candidates for the position of software developer and want to test candidates on algorithms, C++, and Java, you can then create three different sections for these topics, algorithms, C++, and Java respectively.
You can also organize questions in each section based on their difficulty and/or type.
Section based testing also allows you to customize the test further by:
- Allowing candidates to revisit a previous section after he finishes solving questions from a further section, etc.
- Also, you can save time in one section which can roll over into the next section to allow greater utilization of time.
Creating Test Sections and how to use them
You can use the test sections option to divide your test into different sections. You must have a minimum of one question in your test to enable this setting.
Note: When you are creating a test that you want to section, you must add questions to the test sequentially.
- You must be logged in to your HackerRank for Work account.
- You must have created a test with a minimum of one question.
- Click on the Tests tab on the home page and then click the required test.
- Once the question(s) are ordered and ready to be put into a section, you can create the section by clicking on the '+' sign. You can reorder questions once a section is created too.
Note: Inversely, you can create as many sections as you want, and then add questions to each section.
- The difficulty level and score of all the questions going into a section should ideally be the same.
Warning: If the difficulty level and score of all the questions in a section are not the same, a warning is displayed as shown below. If the section is randomly picking some questions and bundling them together as a test, such a scenario will be disadvantageous to candidates. We will discuss this in more detail shortly.
Warning message displayed when the section has questions of varying complexities
- On clicking the '+' sign, you will see 3 options, select 'Create Section' and/or `Add another section'(if the test already has existing sections) and the questions will now be bundled together in a section.
- When a new section is created there are options to either add questions to the section from the library or create a new question. You can select existing questions and move them to the new section. More section settings can be customized by clicking on the section settings option as shown below.
- To move and organize Questions across different sections, click on the Move option and select the alternate section to move the Question. Refer to the How to Move Questions across Sections in a Test topic for more information.
- Upon clicking section settings, a dialogue box appears where you can customize many intricate settings such as section-time limit, picking questions randomly to bundle as a test, and so on.
- Randomizing the question selection
Disclaimer: This setting was previously termed as making a test ‘dynamic’, but now the same setting can be applied in section settings directly.
- A section can be set in such a way that the system randomly picks a given number of questions from the section, for each candidate during a test. The same is illustrated below.
- Circling back to why all questions in a section need to be of the same type and level of difficulty, the test will work with different types of questions, however, since the score will be different for different candidates (since all questions in the section do not have the same points) each candidate will be scored on a different max score, which is a wrong practice.
Sectional Time Limit
- The time limit for a particular section can also be set. By default, there is no time limit on a section. You can add a time limit to sections, sectional time limits don’t take effect unless advanced settings are changed (rollover and revisit) as illustrated in the image below.
Advanced Section Settings
There are 3 advanced settings that can be configured for each section as shown below.
- The first setting, Show sections to Candidates enables candidates to see the division of questions into sections while attempting the test. The candidate view of sections is as shown below.
- By default, this option is enabled. If you disable this setting, a candidate taking the test cannot see the sections and will see all questions from all sections together, listed one below the other as shown below.
- The next two settings, Allow a candidate to revisit earlier sections, and Time left in a previous section rolls over to the next section, are enabled by default and all sections need to have a time limit. They can also be disabled only if all sections in the test have a set time limit.
- Click on the Save button.