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There are a number of ways your instructor can set up their class and gradebook in Quest. The most contentious of them involves accruing negative points on questions with wrong answers.

Many instructors prefer this method of grading to dissuade students from answering a question by guessing. However, we realize how frustrating it can be to be honestly working through a problem and find that each time you re-try a question a negative score builds up. In these cases, we highly recommend attending office hours, or seeking a study group to help check each other's work, in order to give each attempt the best possible chance of being correct.



Multiple Choice questions

A multiple choice question worth 10 points that has 8 options will have 7 attempts to get the correct answer with the following possible grade outcomes based on the selected reduced score grading method:

AttemptNo Negative PointsNegative PointsOne Free Try
Never correct0-100


Free response questions

Free response questions do not have listed options to limit the number of retries, so these questions allow you 7 attempts. The reduced score grading calculation is slightly different as negative points do not apply.

AttemptNormalOne Free Try
Never correct00

We recommend instructors notify students when using this style of grading scheme, but it is ultimately your instructor's decision. As always, please contact us if you have concerns at