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Migration to New Formula Questions - a suggestion to aid in that

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Hello,

I've used both your Classic and New Formula-style Questions in Canvas.  I'm a finance professor, but like many math, science and engineering professors (and especially in an attempt to minimize cheating), I like to ask 'numerically dynamic' problems in which the numbers change each time the same question is asked.  What Canvas calls:   Formula-Questions.

For most users the New style of Formula Question has two pretty substantial limitations relative to the Classic style.  I think one of the two has an easy fix, which would enhance the New style of Formula Questions substantially.

The first difference is that New-style math variables such as x, y and z MUST be identified in the body of the question via tick marks as:     What is 18 divided by 'x' ?   In the Classic-style, the math variables are identified via square brackets:     What is 18 divided by [x] ?

While it would be GREAT if the New style could also use square brackets,  [x], that's may not be an easy fix.

The second issue is probably a pretty easy fix on the Canvas (programmer) side.   At present the New-style problems do not allow alpha-numeric variable names such as  x1, x2, x3 etc...   For technical subjects many variables are indexed by the time in which they occur.   I.e. the position on the x-axis at times 1, 2, and 3 would typically be 'coded' in any language as x1, x2, and x3.   Doing so in not a problem in the Classic Formula Problems, but it's not allowed in the New Formula Problems.

I'm hoping that some empathetic individual at Instructure/Canvas will realize that:

Canvas is providing ZERO support to migrate Formula Questions from the Classic format to the New format.  Nor are they supporting the Classic format Formula Questions after July 2021 - leaving hundreds of STEM professors out in the cold.   

As such, Canvas is forcing each individual professor to migrate each and every Formula Question MANUALLY.   That stinks (and I think it make Canvas look like they don't care about their existing customer base - at least the STEM-based customers), but what makes it worse is that for problems involving alpha-numeric variables each variable has to be renamed with an alpha-only name, as xOne, xTwo, xThree...   

I've been writing code for 45 years, and I've never seen alpha-only variables.  This has to be an EASY behind the curtain fix at Canvas.

Can anyone at Canvas comment / reply?

Much thanks

Larry G

Finance professor, Cal Poly

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@LarryGormanSLO I do not use formula questions, but this looks like you have thought through what it would take to achieve your requests.  To bring these ideas to the attention of the canvas engineers, you might want to suggest each of them here: https://community.canvaslms.com/t5/Idea-Conversations/idb-p/ideas

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@LarryGormanSLO I do not use formula questions, but this looks like you have thought through what it would take to achieve your requests.  To bring these ideas to the attention of the canvas engineers, you might want to suggest each of them here: https://community.canvaslms.com/t5/Idea-Conversations/idb-p/ideas

View solution in original post