How to create an online exam with a timer on WordPress for FREE


Exam With a Timer


Tick-tock! Want to create an online exam on your WordPress website for FREE? You are in the right place!

In this article, I will show you the easiest and quickest way to do that. Let's begin!

As learning has shifted from lecture rooms to online platforms, teachers and professors need to have a powerful tool under their disposal for creating and conducting exams. Perks of online learning are plenty, however, it has its challenges, as well.  The common concern is developing ways to prevent cheating on tests. Taking benefit of the available technologies and tools around them with the lack of in-person proctoring, cheating is easier than ever. So, if you are a representative of educational institutions, stay with me and read this extra-helpful article as it is written especially for you :).


How to minimize the chances of cheating during online exams?

The answer to the question is obvious – by choosing the right plugin which offers the appropriate features. For instance, create an exam with a certain time limit. It will push your exam takers to concentrate solely on taking the exam and manage to submit it on time. So, they will not have more time available for implementing any cheating techniques. Admit it, when you see the time is ticking away, the only matter is to focus on the exam and answer it on your own.
The method is implemented by various famous educational institutions and is considered a successful one, by far.


How to make an online exam with a timer on a WordPress website for FREE?

For creating a timer-based exam we are going to use the WordPress Quiz Maker plugin. It is the best choice for conduction exams remotely. Why? Let's see what it offers connecting with the timer functionality!

  • Set a countdown timer.
  • Show notice before the beginning of the quiz.
  • Show a warning message after time is up.
  • Activate the timer countdown on a browser tab.

Let's implement all of the above-mentioned features together step-by-step!

Firstly, of course, you need to download and install the plugin on your WordPress website. To do that, please go to the Plugins section from your dashboard, then click on the Add New button. Type quiz maker in the search bar and hit on the Install Now button near the plugin. After that, the Activate button will appear, click on it, as well.

Furthermore, with the help of the Quiz plugin, you can generate quizzes with Certificates. Sending Certificates to your succeeded students will make them strive for better results. Motivate your users with the WordPress best quiz plugin and make them stay longer on your website. Moreover, to make your experience more advanced and professional I suggest you learn how to create an online exam with the Quiz Maker plugin.

Congratulations! The first step is already done: you have this first-class plugin installed ։)


Quiz Maker Plugin


Before creating your first exam, let's create the questions first.  To do that, please go to the Questions page from the left navbar of the plugin and hit the Add New button. Then, choose the type of question from the given list and fill out all the necessary fields. Add media to your question, if needed. There are 7 question types: Radio, Checkbox, Dropdown, Text, Short text, Number, and Date. Do not forget to click on the Save button after the configuration.


New Question


Now, let's create your first exam. To make that, please go to the Quizzes page from the quiz plugin's menubar and click on the Add New button. Add your already created questions to the quiz, and fill out other required fields on the General tab. 

By the way, we have a separate step-by-step guide article for you to learn How to Create an Online Exam in WordPress.


New Quiz


Drumroll, please…!  It's time to implement a timer. To do that, please move to the Settings tab of your quiz. Scroll a little bit down and find the Enable Timer option. Activate it by ticking on the checkbox next to it.  After that, the suboptions will appear. Give your preferred time value to the Timer seconds option in seconds. For example, if you want to build a 30 minutes timer-based exam, give 1800 value to the field(30 x 60). Please note that the exam will be submitted automatically within a set time. In that case, all the answered questions of the exam taker will surely be included in the calculation.


Enable Timer Option


Next, type in your preferred text in the Message before starting the quiz textarea. For insance you can build up an Online English Level Test and the message will be shown before starting the exam. You can use the %%time%% variable, to inform participants about the set time. Add media to the message if needed. It is developed to give instructions to the participants before the exam starts.

For example, The test starts the moment you click on the Start button. You may work on your test until the time allotted for it ends. Duration: %%time%%.


Examination start page


Then, give a warning to your exam participants when the amount of time allowed to complete the test is over. To do that, write your message in the Message after the timer ends textarea. Add media to it, if needed.

For example, Your time is up! Your test is submitted automatically whether you're finished or not.


Examination finish page


As a final step, activate the Show timer on page tab, if you would like the timer countdown to be shown on a browser tab.  Do not forget to save your quiz by hitting on the Save button.

You can also create an Online Exam with a Certificate to give your students proof of completion.

Copy the shortcode of your examination and paste it into any post/page you would like to.

Hurray!  Your timer-based examination is ready!


Despite the timer functionality, the plugin offers plenty of options for preventing cheating. and conduction tests remotely with the free version. Here are presented some of them:

  • Limit who can have access to the test and remove it anytime with the help of the Only for logged-in users and the Only for selected user role options.
  • Detect the user's attempts by their IP addresses, WordPress User ID, Cookie, Cookie + IP, and limit to take the test only once. The perfect option to implement in order to not receive multiple submissions from the same student.
  • Choose how many users can take the test by giving value to the Limitation count of takers option.
  • Implement an extra layer of protection by enabling the schedule.

Find out all of the options the WordPress Quiz Maker plugin offers here: WordPress Quiz Plugin Documentation.


For more advanced needs, the Premium version of the plugin offers the following features:

  • Generate customized certificates and automatically send them to participants as soon as the exam is submitted. Use variables to personalize it as much as you want such as %%user_name%%, %%score%%, %%current_date%%, %%interval_message%%, %%unique_code%% and dozens more.
  • Set a general password or give one-time unique access codes to each exam taker individually for having access to the quiz.
  • Prevent entries more than allowed. Specify the count of the attempts of each user for taking the quiz.
  • Know more about your participants. Activate the Information form to be filling out before or after taking the exam. Create custom fields such as Academic ID number, I agree to the Privacy Policy checkbox, Phone number, Uni email address and etc.
  • Manage and control access to the quiz plugin from your WordPress dashboard. Each instructor(teacher) will see only his/her created quizzes and results of those quizzes except the admin, he will see all of them.
  • Connect the exam with your MailChimp, ActiveCampaign, Google Sheets, Zapier, and Campaign Monitor accounts. Most useful and powerful tools are integrated within the plugin and many more to come.
  • Add Leaderboards(Individual and Global), a User history page, and an All results page.
  • And many more!

Get Started

Check out the Premium version.

Have a question concerning the free version? You can reach out to the support team of the plugin via the FREE Support forum.

Have an inquiry concerning the premium version? Contact the support specialist of the plugin via the following contact form.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I add a “time’s up” warning to the exam?

Sure! In the WordPress Quiz Maker plugin, you can add the “time’s up” warning by going to the Settings tab > Enable Timer > Message after the timer ends, and typing the text.

How do I enable one-time access for each participant?

Let’s say you’re creating an audio quiz in WordPress, and to limit the access of the participants you need to go to the Limitation Users tab > the Maximum number of attempts per user > Attempts count.

How do I give certificates to the exam takers?

All you need to do is go to the E-Mail, Certificate tab, enable Send certificate to the user, and start customizing your first certificate.

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