USATestprep Blog

Archive for May, 2012

Common Core

Friday, May 25th, 2012

The most popular concerns that we hear deal with the Common Core State Standards. We want you to know that we are doing whatever we can to be prepared for these changes. USATestprep has recently finished aligning your state standards directly to the common core standards using the comparison tool from the state DOE. This allows you to see how questions fit into the new CCSS, and it allows you to see which concepts are in both and which are only listed by your state.
This summer, we are completing our dedicated CCSS review that will incorporate the new common core standards and be available for your students next school year. Due to cost and political uncertainties, it is too early to predict exactly what will be required of your students when the new testing (SBAC/PARCC) is rolled out. However, due to our speed and flexibility, we will be able to easily modify our product as more of this information becomes available.

Quick Tips: Activities

Friday, May 18th, 2012

As you probably already know, there is much, much more to USATestprep than multiple choice questions. But if you haven’t explored the other options, be sure to look at the Activities under the Print Resources section of your Test Subject page.

When you click on Activities, you’ll see a wide range of worksheets that can be printed and used in your class. Clicking on the image of the worksheet will bring up the printable copy for you. Just below that, you can print off a key for your records, or give us any feedback about the activity. Have a worksheet or two that you think other students and teachers could use? Just click on the link on the right to see the Opportunities for selling us your worksheets!

Quick Tips: Exporting Results

Wednesday, May 16th, 2012

You can always download student results and save them to your hard drive or your network.

When you look under your “Student Results” tab (1) on your Teacher Home page, you will see Export on the left. First, make sure you select the appropriate Class, Activity, Date range, and any other variables that are appropriate. Next, Choose which version of Excel you have on your computer (2), then click the Export button.

These results will automatically download to your computer. Depending on your computer settings, Excel may open automatically, but you might have to manually start it on your own. The results are sortable and editable to suit your needs. Of course, it helps to have some prior use of Excel, but this might be something to ask your I.T. department about.

Even though it goes without saying, we’ll say it anyway: if you have any questions, just email or call us.

Quick Tips: Favorites

Monday, May 14th, 2012

Ever see a question on USATestprep that you wanted to put on a benchmark test? Ever wanted to put your OWN questions on a benchmark test? Well, you can do both of those things by utilizing our “Favorites” feature.

If you see a question that you’d like to remember for another day, look for the “Add to Favorites” link underneath the question.

This will automatically add the question to your Favorites tab on your teacher home page. Here you can see both the USATestprep question you’ve tagged as favorites AND any questions of your own that you’ve input.

Clicking on the My Questions link, will allow you to add your own questions on the site. Choose “Add Question” and you start a 3 part step to adding a question. First, chose the Test Subject (1)you want the question to be a part of. Note: you must have already created a class that is associated with that test subject. Then choose the (2)standard with which the question will be associated. (Nomenclature in your state may vary from the example shown.) When finished, click the “Continue” button.

Next, input your question. You can assign an image (1) to your question. Just click the box and upload your jpg, png, or gif file. If the question needs a prompt or a passage, input it in the (2) prompt box. The text of your question (3) goes in the next box, and the choices (4) can be input underneath. BE SURE to choose (5) the correct answer… very important! If you want to include an explanation like other questions on USATestprep, input it (6) in the Explanation/Feedback box. You may also notice that you can use HTML tags by clicking on the (7) yellow HTML button. The button is associated specifically with the field to which it is adjacent. If you don’t wish to do this, simple ignore them. Once you’ve completed this step, click “Review Question.”

Then proof your work. If you need to revise it, (1) click the “Edit Question” link. If it looks perfect to you, (2) click the Submit Question button and it will be saved on your Favorites Tab.

The next time you create a Benchmark test in this test subject, you can add that question in third step of the process. Click “Replace With Similar Question” link…

… then choose (1) the “Favorites” tab on the next modal window. You will see relevant questions (2) you’ve entered- and you’ll also have access to USATestprep Questions (3) that you’ve previously tagged. When see the question you want to insert, just click (4) the green “Choose Question” button.

The system automatically replaces the old question with this new one. You can also see this is a question that YOU created: look at the apple!

You should note that when you create a question only YOU will have access to it. Yes, we store it for you, but no other teachers- not in any other school or even within your school- will be able to add it into their own benchmark tests, nor will it show up in their practice questions. Your question is only for you.

If you ever have any questions about this process, don’t hesitate to lest us know.

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