Monday, March 14, 2011

ASK Technology

Would your District benefit from the ability to move your existing assessments of all types into a technology-based environment? ASK Technology allows you to import, schedule, administer online with optional use of response pads or bubble sheet responding, and automatically score the results for assessments originally developed external to Galileo K-12 Online technology. ASK Technology is especially useful for administering district end-of-chapter, -unit or -course assessments in higher grade levels.

We understand time is important and made sure that ASK Technology was designed to import pre-existing assessment content with ease. With ASK Technology districts can:

- Import Pre-Existing Assessment Content Anytime. Content may be imported immediately following Galileo implementation as well as at any point in the future. There is no need to design and schedule importation at one specific time or at a district level.

- Import a Variety of Content Formats. ASK Technology is compatible with a wide variety of content formats and can accommodate a wide variety of curricula. As long as tests can be saved to a common file type such as PDF, the tests can be imported using ASK Technology.

- Administer, Score, and View Pre-Existing Content Online. Since ASK tests are stored online, assessments can be administered, scored, reported on, and viewed online.

- Report on Pre-Existing Content Using Galileo Reporting Capabilities. Like all Galileo assessments, results from ASK assessments can be viewed in a wide variety of user-friendly reports, including those that involve item-level information. For example, a teacher examining the Detailed Item Analysis Report may notice that students are having difficulty with a particular item and wish to view the item to determine possible explanations for the difficulty. ASK Technology makes viewing the item online possible.

- Enable Psychometric Analyses of Pre-Existing Content. As with all Galileo assessments, when an ASK assessment is administered to a sufficiently large number of students, it is possible to conduct psychometric analyses to generate DL scores, place tests on a common scale, and update item characteristics such as item difficulty, item discrimination, and guessing. This type of information provides data on the extent to which items are contributing effectively to the measurement of student abilities being assessed.

- Align Pre-Existing Content to Standards. Pre-existing items can be aligned to standards using the ASK interface. In addition, when new standards are adopted, these items can easily be aligned to the new standards by simply selecting the appropriate new standard for each item within the ASK interface.

We would be happy to discuss with you the number of ways in which ASK Technology can help your District. Leave a comment on the post or give us a call at 1.877.442.5453. You can also sign up for an online overview on our website.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Instructional Dialogs

I can still remember sitting in my middle school history classes as Mr. C. went through overhead transparency after overhead transparency as I quickly attempted to get everything written down in my notes. I was able to record almost every single word about Mesopotamia, but did I actually LEARN any of it? Or was I simply trying to do my best impression of a court stenographer? Even worse, two weeks later when it came time to study for the unit test on early civilizations, I couldn't read half my notes because my hands had cramped during frantic note taking.

I hated taking notes in that class, and the worst part was if you were caught talking or being a general classroom nuisance then you got to spend time at lunch or after school cleaning the stacks and stacks of used transparency sheets covered in Vis-A-Vis markers. I remember it all too well. Technology advanced and soon I was sitting in high school history class. There I was desperately trying to keep up with Mr. V. and his presentations. We've all seen these boring presentations.

On the plus side, there were fewer transparency sheets to clean at the end of the day (however there was plenty of gum underneath the desks, but that's a whole other story). While the way the information was given had changed, the end result was pretty much the same. If a student was unable to get the notes, if they were absent, if they left their backpack on the bus, they didn't have the notes ready to study.

If only there was a way for teachers to be able to present information to students in a fashion they are familiar and comfortable with, while making it easier to retain the information and have the notes handy, without the dreaded, crippling, wrist cramp.


You may or may not be aware of Galileo's Instructional Dialog technology. These are slide-based instructional pieces located in Galileo K-12 Online. Dialogs are currently available for use within Galileo, but you can also make your own.

What is the benefit of creating a Dialog to use in the classroom?
Dialogs are online - Galileo Dialogs are available to you regardless of which computer you are using to access it.
Dialogs are available - Your students can log into Galileo and pull up the Dialog that you've created. They can review their notes before a test and focus more on what the teacher is teaching during the class rather than stressing to jot down every last word and letter before you switch the slide.
Dialogs are standards-based - The first step in creating a Dialog is aligning it to a standard or standards. This makes it easy for you to go in after the fact and find the Dialog because you know what is being taught.
Dialogs are interactive - You can even add a quick quiz at the end or add question slides in the Dialog to guide any classroom discussion of the topic at hand.
Dialogs are multimedia - There are many options to add media to Dialogs. You can add pictures, videos, graphs, clip art, as well as links to other games, videos, etc., that are already out on the Internet.

Galileo Dialog

(Click the image above to open a Galileo K-12 Online Dialog)

-Chris Domschke
Field Services Coordinator