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Atomic Assessments Introduction

Atomic Assessments has customizable question options and settings beyond those available in the built-in Canvas quizzes. It integrates with Canvas Speedgrader and Gradebook and is available for all Utah State faculty in Canvas.

Watch a two-minute feature demonstration or explore the Atomic Assessments overview page.

Atomic Assessments from Atomic Jolt on Vimeo.

Should I Use Canvas Quizzes or Atomic Assessments?

Question Types

Atomic Assessments has 10 question categories with 4+ question types each, including interactive and customizable options for fill-in-the-blank, images, math, graphing, chemistry, and more. See images of these categories and types in the questions overview.

Compare question options with Canvas Classic quizzes and Canvas New Quizzes to find the best option for your course.


Customizable Question Types

Questions and assessments can be customized at the code level. In Canvas quizzes, an HTML editor is available with the Rich Content Editor, but this does not change the format of the question type itself, as is possible in Atomic Assessments.

Atomic Assessments assignment settings with code editor showing

Supplemental Tools

In Atomic Assessments, instructors can enable on-screen features such as a protractor, ruler, line-by-line text reader, and scientific calculator.

Besides question types, Canvas Classic quizzes provide no built-in feature options. New Quizzes in Canvas provides a calculator option.

Atomic Assessments supplemental tools are a protractor, ruler, line-by-line text reader, and scientific calculator

Embed Questions in a Content Page

Atomic Assessment questions can be embedded in lesson and assignment pages. The only equivalent option is a Design Tools multiple-choice option on lesson pages; however, only Atomic Assessment questions on lesson pages can be added to students’ grades.

Canvas page with Atomic Assessments question included on the page Lesson page with Atomic Assessments Question

Student Performance Reports

Atomic Assessments generates five different reports per assignment: Summary, Item Scores, Item Statistics, Responses, and Outcomes.

an example Atomic Assessment assignment item scores showing a color indicator for right, partially right, and incorrect answers for all students on all questions presented in a grid Atomic Assessments Item Scores

screenshot of a report generated by Atomic Assessments showing the item stats of each question on an assessment including average, standard deviation, and discrimination index Atomic Assessments Item Statistics

Compare reports with Canvas Classic quiz reports and New Quiz reports to find the best option for your course.

Customizable Assessment Layout

Using a customizable format and the “passage” feature, instructors can build entire graded or ungraded lessons within an Atomic Assessments assignment.

Canvas page showing Atomic Assessment questions in two columnslayout option settings

If you are interested in a simpler layout feature, New Canvas Quizzes also offers a side-by-side passage and question(s) option.

Other Features

  • Print a copy of the assignment or answer key
  • An in-quiz “Check answer” button for individual questions
  • Multiple attempts for individual questions

Additional Resources

While Atomic Assessments has many sophisticated and exciting options, it may exceed your current course needs or interests. Explore the options and tutorials to see if it is a good fit for you.


Before copying a course using Atomic Assessment: You need to enable Atomic Assessment in the new course before you copy the content into the new course.



  1. Atomic Assessments – Documentation.” Atomic Jolt. Accessed 25 February 2020.