I've seen this discussed in other areas but not under BB9.1 yet so I thought I would address this. I know when we were testing Angel, years ago, one of the best features was that they had the ability for you to make a group for ADA and have that group special deployment options verses the regular students. This was a WONDERFUL option so that you wouldn't have to make multiple tests when you had a time limit set. I know that you don't have to do the Auto Submit, but if you don't do that students will continue taking the test even when the time has expired. There is nothing in the grade center that shows that X student took longer than the expected time so this causes the instructor to have to go through EVERY ATTEMPT for that test to see if someone went over the allotted time. Also, it isn't fair to the student who is getting extra time to have to say "continue taking test" when they aren't under the same constaints as the other students.
Please help me figure out what other schools are doing about this, and if BB has any thoughts of taking the wonderful Angel programmers and having them work this into BB.
As you have said, instructors do not have to use "Auto-Submit" if they want to use their own discretion on whether an individual student should be penalized for going over the time limit or not. "Auto-Submit" is a new feature, and was not part of earlier Blackboard Learn/Academic Suite products, and that's at least partly because it allowed instructors to take ADA students into account when deciding whether or not a particular student should be penalized for exceeding the time limit.
It's not correct to say that there is "nothing in the grade center that shows that X student took longer than the expected time"---students who go over the time limit on their tests will have a "Needs grading" icon displayed for the test in the grade center, to indicate that the test requires an instructor to look at the test in order to determine the grade that should be awarded.
Also, students who exceed the time limit do not have to say "continue taking the test" if Auto-submit is turned off. Students are informed of the time limit, and are warned when the time limit is approaching, but there is no "Continue taking the test" when the time limit is reached, at least not when I tested it.
In any event, I know that Blackboard is aware of the desire to be able to set different time limits on a test for different groups of students, and I believe that's something they are working on.
Thank you for the reply. I must have a setting wrong. Can you look at this video and tell me what is wrong?
My mistake! You are right--that "click to continue taking the test" checkbox seems to be new, because that's not something I saw on previous versions, but I hadn't double-checked with the most recent service pack versions.
It's also more than a little confusing, since "OK" submits the test, and "Cancel" continues it--that explains some problems that some of our students were having with the test "automatically" submitting even with auto-submit turned off.
I also notice that there's a short "grace period", where the student can submit the test a few seconds late after hitting the time limit, and the extra time does not trigger a "Needs grading" indicator in the grade center. If the student goes a minute or more over, though, I still see a "Needs grading" indicator.
Thanks again for the reply. I was hoping I was doing something wrong but it appears that I'm not. I agree that is confusing to students, especially if they already have a reason to be needing the extended time.
I believe the group option for different deployments, like Angel did, is a much needed feature of BB.
I'll inform my instructors that a student has a 1 min grace period where they won't know they went over but more than that they will be made aware.
If you have connections with the BB designers, please push this feature. I'm going to do a feature request for this today.
As I mentioned earlier, Blackboard indicated (last year) that options for multiple time limits is a feature that's already something that's being planned.
Will also await this feature.Dunno if the workaround I use will be of help, but here it is:
I download a copy of the test through Bb. It is identical, then I upload it and rename the test with an identifier that the ADA students with extended time considerations can recognize. As an example, I have TEST ABC for the majority of the class, and TEST ABC XT for the accommodated students.
I then password protect TEST ABC XT with a password shared with the ADA counselors and the specific students, so only the ADA-accommodated students are afforded the additional time. Both tests are deployed simultaneously. You will need to set up the gradebook so that one or the other test score is accepted.
Despite its "bulkiness," it works fairly well as no one is openly identified in the class, and all time-based accommodations are met.
I'm afraid we have no idea where the "multiple assessment release settings" option is in the planning stages. It has not been mentioned in any of the "product roadmap" sessions I've seen this year, which means that it's probably not included in SP10 which is supposed to be released by the end of the year.
Also, remember that even if the feature is added in a new release, that doesn't necessarily mean that your school will be upgrading their server to that version immediately.
I'm searching for an answer to this question now too, and wonder how well you think the "Adaptive Release" works for this need. I'm still muddling through what the logistics should be to make this work best for the instructor/course builder. Creating separate tests for the special needs with an adaptive release rule for just that student avoids the pressure created by the countdown for the student in question, but I believe I know that multiple tests create multiple grading columns, and with a weighted column in use a kind of nightmarish snowball effect occurs for an instructor/designer when course copy occurs later.
I don't have any experience here and don't have any time to experiment so I thank you, in advance for any guidance you might provide.
It's kind of a pain to set up, but you can use two copies of the test with different timer settings, and then use adaptive release to select which students see which version of the test. As you said, this does create two different columns in the grade center.
If you want students to only see one column for each test in "My Grades", you have to set up a separate total-type column for the test that includes both versions of the test, and then show that column instead of the individual test columns to students in "My Grades". The downside of that is that students cannot view their test attempts through "My Grades", so they will only be able to see them from the (adaptive release-controlled) test link. Also, some care has to be taken when setting up the overall total/weighted total column for the course, to make sure you are only including the "combined" columns for each of the test.
I'm not sure why this would cause a "nightmarish snowball effect" if the instructor copies the course--the copy should not have any more, or any different, grade center columns than the original had unless the instructor is doing the copy multiple times (in which case the "nightmarish snowball effect" will happen whether you are using that adaptive release method or not...).
Historically, the problem of how to best accommodate giving extended time to some students is the main reason why tests were not automatically submitted when the time limit was reached in Blackboard, and that's why there is still an option to automatically submit or not even after that auto-submit functionality was added.
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