[Micronet] alternatives to Scantron

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[Micronet] alternatives to Scantron

Eric H. EICHORN
Our department (Psychology) has been using two very old Scantron machines (one that connects to a computer and one stand-alone) to score exams. They are a maintenance headache and the users complain that they're difficult to use. The department management is considering spending some money to replace them with something more modern. We can, of course, buy a current model Scantron machine that will run current software, but I'm looking into alternatives.

There seem to be several programs out there that let you print your own bubble forms, and then scan them through a conventional scanner (pretty much anything with a sheet feeder). I'm wondering what other departments are doing for grading exams. Anyone else still using Scantrons? What are other people using?

Eric Eichorn
Psychology

 
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Re: [Micronet] alternatives to Scantron

jon kuroda-2
This may not be so relevant for multiple choice exams for which
Scantron excelled, but in EECS where many courses have longform
reponse questions on exams many faculty use software written by
an EECS Faculty and some students called Gradescope (previously
called Pandagrader)[1].

It's really meant for exams that require human evaluation of an
answer vs the multiple choice ABCDE of Scantron-type exams, but
it has provided a number of benefits when grading the long-exam
response exam, number one being higher quality evidence / chain
of custody in the event of cheating. [long details at the end.]

For scantrons, someone I met from Harvard says they are using a
web service called Akindi <https://akindi.com/pages/about>, but
hasn't used it herself, so she didn't have anything good or bad
to say about it firsthand. (I think that it used to be called a
more boring name like DataPort or something).

Obligatory caveat: online systems can suffer data loss, outages
and many other such disastrophes that may impact academic grade
submission deadlines (or Faculty/TA sleep schedules during that
long home stretch during finals).

--Jon

Re Pandagrader (Now Gradescope)

With Pandagrader, proctors collect the exams and feed them into
a scanner immediately and then feed the scanner output into the
Pandagrader system.  Grading happens only upon the digital copy
of the exams.

First, this lets the TAs and Faculty grade exams without having
to all be in the same place for the entire stretch of time - it
can be hard to achieve this during finals - or when half of the
TAs all come down with the same flu/cold/food poisoning/etc.

Second, this lets Faculty immediately secure the paper hardcopy
exams instead of letting them get moved around a room for hours
during a grading session.  This is a huge help in the sad event
that a incident of cheating is discovered - chain of custody.

Third, whereas before a student could review the hardcopy paper
exam after grading and possibly surreptitiously change answers,
that's a lot harder to do when there's a snapshot of all of the
exams taken immediately after the exam ends.


[1] https://www.gradescope.com/about
On Thu, Sep 25, 2014 at 12:39:42PM -0700, Eric H. EICHORN wrote:

> Our department (Psychology) has been using two very old Scantron machines
> (one that connects to a computer and one stand-alone) to score exams. They
> are a maintenance headache and the users complain that they're difficult to
> use. The department management is considering spending some money to
> replace them with something more modern. We can, of course, buy a current
> model Scantron machine that will run current software, but I'm looking into
> alternatives.
>
> There seem to be several programs out there that let you print your own
> bubble forms, and then scan them through a conventional scanner (pretty
> much anything with a sheet feeder). I'm wondering what other departments
> are doing for grading exams. Anyone else still using Scantrons? What are
> other people using?
>
> Eric Eichorn
> Psychology

 
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Re: [Micronet] alternatives to Scantron

erol
In reply to this post by Eric H. EICHORN
In MCB and IB, we are using ReMark Office OMR for exams and evaluations.  This app allows custom bubble form printing and use of an image scanner.  It works fairly well.  Data acquisition and grade analysis are fairly simple.

We also have an NCS OpScan 8 OMR form scanner and use ReMark Classic OMR for data acquisition and grade analysis.  It also works well and is somewhat faster than the Office OMR app, although you must purchase the printed Scantron forms.  

Bubbles can be placed closer together on on Classic OMR forms so it is possible to have more questions per sheet, but the image scan forms are very customizable.

Both these apps are for Windows PC.  There are some other apps available for both Windows and Mac OS, but I have not explored them much yet.

The NCS OpScan is a good machine.  Scantron acquired NCS from Pearson a few years ago.  I’m not sure if they are still making the OpScan line or have incorporated the technology into their Scantron line.  I believe Apperson, Sekonic and Fujitsu make OMR scanners.  Apperson has a software package that is free called Datalink Connect http://www.apperson.com/datalink-main/datalink-connect.  ReMark is made by Gravic, but they have also partnered with Scantron.

There are also some iOS apps for grading bubble forms you might check out for smaller courses.  The app WISE looks promising, but I have not explored it yet https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/wise/id642052766?mt=8.  

Let me know if you’d like to see out systems.

Erol Kepkep



On Sep 25, 2014, at 12:39 PM, Eric H. EICHORN <[hidden email]> wrote:

> Our department (Psychology) has been using two very old Scantron machines (one that connects to a computer and one stand-alone) to score exams. They are a maintenance headache and the users complain that they're difficult to use. The department management is considering spending some money to replace them with something more modern. We can, of course, buy a current model Scantron machine that will run current software, but I'm looking into alternatives.
>
> There seem to be several programs out there that let you print your own bubble forms, and then scan them through a conventional scanner (pretty much anything with a sheet feeder). I'm wondering what other departments are doing for grading exams. Anyone else still using Scantrons? What are other people using?
>
> Eric Eichorn
> Psychology
>
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> The following was automatically added to this message by the list server:
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> To learn more about Micronet, including how to subscribe to or unsubscribe from its mailing list and how to find out about upcoming meetings, please visit the Micronet Web site:
>
> http://micronet.berkeley.edu
>
> Messages you send to this mailing list are public and world-viewable, and the list's archives can be browsed and searched on the Internet.  This means these messages can be viewed by (among others) your bosses, prospective employers, and people who have known you in the past.


 
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