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Posts Tagged ‘quia’

Centro,quia student access problems

Quia Options for Grading in course or book or exercise

  1. The instructor workstation features prominently the tab : options.Quia - Instructor Workstation_course-options
  2. if you go into grading, you see that not all options can be changed from here.
  3. Quia - Instructor Workstation_course-options-grading
  4. However, when customizing your book, you may have already found the options next to  each individual exercise that allow you to change Spelling/Case sensitivityquia-grading-options-per-exercises
  5. However, if you go to the tab: book, you will find more options there, including how you can change Feedback and Spelling/Case sensitivity for the entire book instead of individual exercises: Quia - Instructor Workstation_book-options

Centro/Quia student access problems at term start: What OneKey?

  1. Our Pearson/Prentice Hall textbook comes with online component, access to which is purchased in the University bookstore.
  2. The textbook comes with a setup brochure (OneKey, yellow) that states: “Go to www.prenhall.com/onekey, click OneKey for Students, then click Getting Started, and select CourseCompass. Follow the on-screen instructions to register for CourseCompass”.
  3. onekey
  4. This page is unresponsive und  forwards to http://www.pearsonhighered.com/
  5. pearson
  6. Cute but I have no idea how to continue from here.
  7. if you try to enter the “CourseCompass Access Code” by browsing manually to www.coursecompass.com, you will read: “CourseCompass is now MyLab and Mastering If you had a CourseCompass account, it works with MyLab / Mastering. Sign in now.” Maybe this change broke the entire signup process?
  8. 100000s of these packages must have been sold by now, each costing 100s of dollars. Why do students and teachers have to waste entire class hours, each worth also 100s of dollars, on banging their head against this pay wall even after they paid?
  9. When reading the instructions, I found it necessary to highlight the steps our students need to take:
    1. CourseCompass Access Code
    2. CourseCompass Course ID
    3. Account username and password
    4. Quia Student Book Key
    5. Quia Course Code
  10.   Wow!  With my teacher login, I can see that the online content which is protected by this pay wall is still the same literally translated print lab manual/workbook material. Must be decades old now.

Student attendance metering: present signin.xls and perspectives

 

We are working on replacing the old attendance meter which is still down:

As you will remember, we have been recording attendance last term and made this data available to you on our new  network share: H:\llc\people\Sign_In_Sheet.xls. To summarize your students attendance, you can filter this data, using standard excel features.

 

New this term: To help you with this, we added an hard-coded MS-Excel auto-filter (see down-arrows in column headers): filter by course language, then number, then teacher, then the student in question , to summarize during assessment.

 

We expanded the data validation, so that we get the computer help us processing the data (sort, filter, search…).

 

Per your request, we added the course number, section and teacher columns to the sign-in sheet (to be manually updated at every term start – a poor man’s integration into the campus information system which had better not be done even by central services, but rather only purchased by them):

Individual teachers can use the built-in filters to drill down to their classes/students for advising/grading.

Individual student can be tracked, together with their time spent in the LLC:

Students enter in the green columns, mostly having to access only built-in shortcuts and selection boxes, while the other columns get updated completely automatically.

To enable students inputting their information directly, we have hacked together a dual screen system in the LLC entrance area. 

 

We will also use this dual screen system for improving other LLC services, by hooking  into central services. We will ask students with less than clear requests (“My professor wants me to do my homework here, where is it?”) to load their syllabus from blackboard and share their screen with the lab assistant, to assist with (not solve: that would need library resources, meaning professional library catalogue, library professional staff and library professional network and procedures) locating movies and other assigned learning materials.

 

For the attendance meter, this means: students can enter this information themselves; lab assistants still supervise, and collect the student ID to double check and prevent the cheating that I was approached about to fix with the prior system: signing in for friends, especially with passwords separate from university-wide passwords which there is no reason to keep secret.

 

Please note that this home-brew spreadsheet-based system is still severely limited in its functionality.

 

We could POSSIBLY (this would need setup and coordination with various central offices) automate this more, given time for the initial investment.

 

I have experimented with hooking into the swipe card system. However, students would have to be asked to swipe out also. For other reporting purposes, I have already managed to retrieve this data in this form:

 

I have experimented with recording log-in (but no log-off) data on the LLC computers (another hack) in a centrally available spreadsheet, in this format:

I have inquired about using Microsoft’s SCCM (a generic software management application not meant for monitoring learning or language learning): We could gather statistics on two LLC-specific programs: the SANAKO media player and the webbrowser.exe (both, however, are likely, but not required to be used for language learning if a student prefers to do the learning in other applications). Neither would record actual files being opened.


All of these approaches, while preventing the most blatant cheating, still would not record actual language learning activity. They do not prevent students from spending their time in the LLC doing unrelated activities (like browsing sports news or playing online games)
while they can do their assigned Blackboard and Quia homework from the convenience of their residence.

It is the professional systems that have been programmed with the resources from of revenue of literally thousands of campus-wide installations that can record these language learning activities.

The Sanako language lab software contains a webbrowser.exe which can not only be remote controlled by the teacher, but also be configured to allow only browsing certain (partial) urls or disallow browsing certain urls. it is also possible to apply different policies in different situations. this facility, while part of the package your purchased with the lab, has not been set up as of yet.

 

It would require developing policies and implementing them. E.g. one could during non-class use of the LLC only allow browsing publisher websites, including Quia.com, and Blackboard.loyola.edu  and Loyola.edu (a radical approach).

 

One could also explicitly preventing certain websites, like Facebook (this would be more effective during face-to-face session in the LLC).

Then there are the facilities within your textbook websites (Quia) and within your course management (Blackboard, keywords for free tools being: Course Statistics, Statistics Tracking with activity_accumulator, Performance Dashboard, Early Warning System Rules, Adaptive Release rules for content, project ASTRO which is an acronym for Advanced System Tracking and Reporting Online), or as an add-on (Provost Pulse).

With the impetus being on ubiquity these days, it will have to be seen whether there are tools for Blackboard or Quia that can help enforcing that students use specific computers (maybe via IP address of computer?).

Beyond these solutions, there is an entire research area for, and software market revolving around, student retention management which also covers attendance tracking. Notable players include Hobsons EMT® Retain and Starfish Early-alert (which is run by a former Blackboard VP and can be integrated with Blackboard student data system as a building block).

 

I suggest we invest our limited local resources into finding better ways to integrate and train on these existing central facilities that provide information on learning (which we then can use to refine our teaching). Given current circumstances, I would recommend exploring the tracking systems in Quia and Blackboard (not restricted to being used on the LLC computers) and tracking learning outcomes (like student language recordings which the LLC can help with – not as much with the digital recording technology which is being commoditized, but rather with providing a language learning shared/collaborative/meeintg space).

 

Quia Online Exercises

Here are examples from the Treffpunkt Deutsch Quia Website. Quia Treffpunkt Deutsch is organized in chapters which you can select from the dropdown navigation control on the left. As you see on the following page, each chapter contains 3 different types of exercises, organized in sections.

If you click on a section header, you will see a list of exercises:

Here is an example of an exercise, assigned as “A[rbeitsbuch=work book], K[apitel=chapter]9: A9[=chapter-number, again]-1[=exercise-number]”.

The letters and numbers from the assignment repeat in the exercise, see this screenshot:

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You can also hover your mouse over the info button in the upper left corner to get a summary of this information:

Also note the link to the corresponding preparatory web page which opens in a new window (Problems getting the window to open? the popup-blocker of your web browser may be the root? instead of simply clicking on the link, try CTRL-clicking, on the link as well as the browser information bar, if it comes up). It is crucial to read/review the corresponding preparatory web page first.

It is not necessary to get everything 100% correct. It is not even a good use of your time to redo the exercise until you get everything 100% correct. Especially if you try speeding up this tedious task by doing the first round mechanically to get at the automated feedback answers, then doing the second round mechanically by pasting them in. That is why I have my Quia course “Options” set to “Calculate cumulative scores based on students’ first attempt” and to Ignore student results after the 1st attempt.

Therefore, you will see that you have only 1 “Attempt remaining” for each exercise. You will also, unless individually told otherwise, only have to do the exercises that are “Assigned” (consult legend at bottom of page).

Rather use the valuable error feedback to go back to the Structures and try to learn and bring any remaining questions to class  – it is highly likely that fellow students have the same problems, especially if they have the same native tongue. That is also the reason why I review your submission before class – not to mark you down, but to see from your problems help what to spend valuable class time one.

Also, the exercises are integrated into the progression of the course (including your ability to do partner work with others during class meetings). That is why you will not be able to submit exercises long after when they were due:

For reviewing, we will use other materials.

Finally, consult the Help which is linked in the top menu:

Quia Audio Files in Internet Explorer

Quia.com contains “Play audio” links to mp3 audio.

You may experience this, when you first try to access the audio with Internet Explorer.

If you cannot read the instruction in the information bar, resize the window so that you can, like here:

After clicking “trust Microsoft” and  “Run ActiveX” in the following dialog, the “Internet Explorer cannot display this webpage” may appear. Ignore this, close the window and reopen it by clicking again on the “Play” link  in the parent window.

This time you will (hopefully) see this:

You need to do this only once  – per PC? per user? Let me know in the comments.