Today, we have a guest blog post written by Leo Guzman, TechCo at Orozco Academy. In the post, he shares several tips and you will learn what he has done at his school to expedite the NWEA testing process—achieving 100% testing completion for Reading and Math for the entire school in a single day!
Also, be sure to review the video tutorial on our NWEA Map 2015 page for how to utilize the iPads in "guided access mode" for testing purposes.
NOTE: Guided Access mode requires utilizing a passcode, because of this, you may want to consider standardizing the passcode used so that all your teachers are using the same passcode.
While trying different ways to implement NWEA at Orozco Academy I have found the following methods to be the best for effectively administering the test.
Use Your iPads
If iPads are available at the school use iPads to test NWEA MAP. The response time is much quicker on iPads than on Laptops or desktops! I have personally never tried the NWEA MAP test for Primary Grades (MPG) on the iPads as I've heard there are issues.
NOTE: The NWEA MAP test for Primary Grades (MPG) K - 2 contains audio and there is currently a known audio issue when using the iPads for this test. At this time a computer is recommended for testing grades K - 2.
Dedicated Person Available
Have a dedicated person available for issues and troubleshooting. This person should be available during all times the test is in session and should know how to fix issues such as:
Be sure the proctor knows how to refresh the web browser. If testing on desktop or laptops the refresh button is not displayed. The keyboard shortcut to refresh the web browser on a PC = F5 and on a Mac = Command+R.
NOTE: The iOS Support team has created a video tutorial on how to use the iPads for the NWEA Map test. Utilizing the iPad allows the student to refresh the web browser themselves. To view the video click here.
Stagger Start Times
Starting too many NWEA tests at a time will cause a strain on your network causing the test to either not load or take very long to load. To fix this have each class or Grade level start at a different time.
Example: Grades 3rd through 6th start at 8:30 AM and grades 7th through 8th start at 9:15 AM.
Network Speed Pro Tips
When we first started testing, Orozco had a 20Mbps connection. The method we used was for teachers to wait until I got to the room before starting the test. I would go to the room and assist the teacher, making sure everyone was on and then go to the next class—each class took about 15 minutes. With this method we would test Reading and Math in five classrooms a day taking 4 days to complete the whole school.
Now, with the iPads and increased bandwidth of 50Mbps, we stagger testing start times beginning with grades 3rd through 6th and 7th through 8th. We now finish testing for the whole school in one day for both Reading and Math!
If your school is less than 30Mbps, I recommend starting each class at a different time
Check your school network speed by going to www.speedtest.net
The NWEA MAP exam season is upon us. The iOS Support Team has put together some documentation that will help you setup student iPads for test taking. The end result of this setup process is the activation of Guided Access on individual iPads. Guided Access will allow students to use the NWEA MAP test session URL on the iPad and will lock down user access to many features of the iPad during test taking time.
Please visit the following link for detailed documentation and a tutorial video:
NWEA MAP 2014
For more information about Guided Access click here.