With summer in full swing, many of you are preparing for fall classes (or at least thinking about it). With that in mind, we wanted to announce some of the new features recently released in WebAssign that might give you some new ideas on how to set up your courses and update your assignments to achieve your pedagogical goals.
The Assignment Editor: Bigger, Better, and More Powerful Than Ever
In summer 2010, we released our improved Assignment Editor to provide you with the ability to define Assignment Templates, more easily apply bonus/penalty points, and set customized question-level behaviors to a set of assignments. Since it launched, we’ve heard many ideas from adopters on how to make the Assignment Editor even more powerful. So, with your suggestions and feedback in mind, we’ve made even more improvements to the Assignment Editor.
New Randomization Controls Improve Mastery Learning
Previously, you could only decide if values in a question were randomized just once for each student, never randomized at all, or randomized after each student submission. However, many adopters wanted to control the randomization of values with even finer granularity. Now, you can define the exact number of submissions that will trigger a new randomization. Ideal for mastery learning assignments, you can choose to present the student with a new randomization after 1 or more submissions (even allowing the student to see the answer or detailed solution, if available, if they’re stuck) before prompting them to try again with new values. Learn how to use this feature.
Customizable Scoring Controls Addresses Multiple Pedagogical Goals
When assigning multi-part questions, particularly when employing some of the newly available randomization techniques, it’s possible that a student’s final attempt at an answer might not always be their best attempt. Now, you can decide to award credit for the student’s best question submission, best question part submission, best whole assignment submission, or their “last attempt” to meet your specific pedagogical intent. Learn how to use this feature.
Time Answering a Question: Anticipate How Long Your Students Will Spend
In addition to seeing the expected difficulty and number of students that had previously answered each question, the Question Browser and Assignment Editor now displays the anticipated time it will take a student to answer each question. With data anonymously collected from every student that has ever attempted the problem, WebAssign uses a patent-pending process to arrive at a median time spent on task. As you build your assignment, you will see the anticipated time the whole assignment will take to complete, allowing you to create assignments based on a preferred duration. Learn how to view Time Answering a Question statistics.
Improved Student View: Follow Progress At-a-Glance
Students will now see visual progress indicators in the assignment question grid, helping them know at a glance which questions they still need to work on. This is especially helpful for assignments that display one question at a time. Learn how your students can view their assignment progress.
We hope you find this summer’s release to be useful as you prepare for fall classes! Enjoy the summer, secure in the knowledge that WebAssign will be waiting for you better than ever when you return!
The WebAssign Team