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McGraw-Hill Education Launches Adaptive Math Placement Platform

McGraw-Hill Education launched the company's first adaptive math placement platform at the Educause 2013 conference in Anaheim. ALEKS Placement, Preparation, and Learning (ALEKS PPL) is an adaptive, open-response placement and remediation platform for higher education.

ALEKS PPL uses adaptive technology to assess students' knowledge and place them in the appropriate college math course for their level. Educational institutions have the option of offering ALEKS Placement tests online or on campus in a proctored environment. The tests use open-response questions rather than multiple-choice ones, which are less precise according to the company. The placement test determines students' mastery level of the subject and then offers an individualized six-week Prep and Learning module with periodic progress assessments.

According to Brian Kibby, president of McGraw-Hill Higher Education, fewer than 1 in 10 remedial students graduate from community college within three years, "and we know that inaccurate placement contributes to this problem," he said in a prepared statement. A 2012 report from Complete College America also found that more than 50 percent of students in two-year colleges and 20 percent in four-year universities are inaccurately placed in remedial courses. According to McGraw-Hill Education, ALEKS PPL helps reduce the amount of time students need to spend in remedial math courses and can even help some students bypass those courses entirely.

Key features of ALEKS Placement, Preparation, and Learning include:

  • Artificial intelligence designed to target individual student knowledge gaps;
  • Open-response, adaptive assessment covering hundreds of topics in 30 questions or less;
  • Transition from placement assessments to targeted learning modules;
  • Mastery-based learning; and
  • On- or off-campus online testing.

McGraw-Hill Education has also announced the availability of ALEKS Placement for first-year chemistry courses.

Further information about ALEKS Placement, Preparation, and Learning can be found at aleks.com.

About the Author

Leila Meyer is a technology writer based in British Columbia. She can be reached at leilameyer@gmail.com.

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