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General

Registration and Access 
How do I access ALEKS? Why does ALEKS use personal student subscriptions? How do I register with ALEKS? How do I use my ALEKS Course Code to register in a particular class? How do I find out what my Course Code is? Why do I need to take a tutorial to use ALEKS? Can my students use the "Back" and "Forward" buttons on their browsers while in ALEKS?
Login Name and Password
I forgot my password. How do I retrieve it? I forgot my ALEKS Login Name. How do I retrieve it?
Assessment 
What is an ALEKS assessment? Why does ALEKS periodically give me new assessments? In a new assessment, why must I review a topic I have already mastered? What is the function of assessments in ALEKS?
Learning Mode 
What is the ALEKS Learning Mode? Why doesn't ALEKS always allow me to study whatever topic I want to? How do I get review in ALEKS? How should I use explanations in ALEKS?
ALEKS Pie Chart 
What is "MyPie" and how do I add topics to it? Why is "MyPie" empty after a new assessment? When I click on a slice of my pie chart, why does ALEKS tell me "No Topics available'?
Upgrades 
What is an ALEKS course product upgrade?

Return to FAQs or contact Customer Support for further assistance.

 

How do I access ALEKS?

You can access ALEKS on the Internet from virtually any computer. All of your data is kept on ALEKS Corporation's servers, so you don't need to use any disks or CDs. All you need is a self-installing, self-maintaining "plug-in" that you automatically download, at no cost, directly from the ALEKS Web site.

Why does ALEKS use personal student subscriptions?

ALEKS is an individualized system for math learning. The individualized nature of ALEKS is not cosmetic; it is the principle around which ALEKS was designed, and the key to its unique effectiveness. Your students' accounts in ALEKS contains records of their assessments and learning progress, along with other kinds of information used to support their success. It does not make sense for any student to use a different student's account; it will not help them, and may produce frustration. Thus, when a student registers in ALEKS, the account is theirs and cannot be transferred. Even after a short period of time using ALEKS in a regular way, the student will receive great educational value deriving from the carefully individualized nature of the ALEKS environment.

How do I register with ALEKS? How do I use my ALEKS Course Code to register in a particular class?

To register with ALEKS and obtain a student account, begin by clicking on the link marked "SIGN UP NOW" in the upper left-hand corner of the ALEKS home page. The next page will offer you a choice of registering for ALEKS use in a class or registering to use ALEKS independently. Please be sure that you choose the correct one.

Using ALEKS with a class. If you are using ALEKS as part of the course requirements for a class in any educational institution, or if you have a teacher or instructor who is involved in your use of ALEKS, you must use the LEFT-HAND option. To do this you must have a 10-character course code provided by your teacher, instructor, or institution. The 10-character course code places you in the correct class for your teacher, instructor or institution. If you do not have the 10-character course code, obtain it from your instructor first before proceeding to register with ALEKS.

Using ALEKS on your own. If you are using ALEKS independently, just to further your learning or to support your work in a class but without any involvement by the teacher or instructor, use the RIGHT-HAND option. To do this you must have credit card information to enter in the system. The account that you create in this way will be private, and cannot be moved or enrolled in any school, college, or university account, or viewed by any instructor.

After this point, you will be prompted for other information as part of the registration process. In some cases, you may need to wait for authorization by your instructor (class use only). When your registration is complete, you will be given your ALEKS Login Name and Password. Your Password can be changed now or at any later time, if you wish to do so. Please keep records of your ALEKS Login Name and Password, as you will need them to access your ALEKS account.

How do I find out what my Course Code is?

In most cases, to register to use ALEKS with your class, you will need a 10-character Course Code. Your instructor will provide you with this code.

Why do I need to take a tutorial to use ALEKS?

The ALEKS tutorial is a brief, interactive training program that teaches you to use some of the basic ALEKS answer input tools, known collectively as the "Answer Editor." Although the Answer Editor is easy to use, the Tutorial will make sure you are proficient with it before using ALEKS.

Can my students use the "Back" and "Forward" buttons on their browsers while in ALEKS?

The "Back" and "Forward" browser buttons (or the corresponding arrows) should not be used in an ALEKS student account. Only the navigation buttons built into ALEKS should be used.

I forgot my password. How do I retrieve it?

To retrieve your ALEKS Password, contact ALEKS Customer Support.

I forgot my ALEKS Login Name. How do I retrieve it?

To retrieve your ALEKS Login Name, contact ALEKS Customer Support.

What is an ALEKS assessment?

The purpose of an ALEKS assessment is to determine your current Knowledge State in a particular subject. When you take an assessment, ALEKS will ask you between 15 and 35 questions. During the assessment, you will not be told whether your answers are correct or incorrect. If you don't know how to answer a question, do not guess. Instead, click on the "I Don't Know" (or "I haven't learned this yet") button, which appears below each question.

You will always be assessed when you first register with ALEKS. You will also be automatically assessed at regular intervals during your use of ALEKS, and you will also be assessed if your teacher or instructor schedules you for an assessment.

Why does ALEKS periodically give me new assessments?

ALEKS periodically reassesses you to confirm your retention of the topics you have studied in your ALEKS course. These periodic assessments are called "automatic" assessments and are given based on your rate of progress in ALEKS and on the amount of time you have spent working in ALEKS.

The results of such an assessment may indicate the need for you to further review topics previously deemed "mastered." These topics and perhaps others that depend upon them are then returned to the ALEKS pie slices and made available for learning again. The ALEKS assessment mechanism ensures that you make maximum progress in learning and retaining the subject matter in your ALEKS course.

In a new assessment, why must I review a topic I have already mastered?

If you demonstrate mastery of a particular topic in an assessment, ALEKS may expect you to demonstrate continued mastery of that topic in subsequent assessments.  If you seem to need review, ALEKS will subtract that topic (and possibly other topics that depend upon it) from your pie, making them available again for selection in Learning Mode.

For this reason, you should always try to do your best on every assessment. Only answer "I Don't Know" (or "I haven't learned this yet") to problems you truly do not know how to do. If you believe you know how to work through a problem, you should try to answer it.

What is the function of assessments in ALEKS?

Assessments are central to the functioning of ALEKS. Students are initially assessed when they begin to use their accounts; this determines a starting point or baseline for their learning. ALEKS uses a powerful integration of assessment and learning; learning is individually guided on the basis of accurate, qualitative assessment results. Because all ALEKS courses contain review material, students will be able to review topics from their previous courses if the assessment shows this is necessary. Then, as students make progress in their course materials, there are periodic, automatic reassessments provided by ALEKS to check retention of new material and provide additional reinforcement as needed. Very often, after a reassessment, students will need to briefly work through topics they had done before, so that their grasp of these topics remains firm as a basis for further progress.

In the newest versions of ALEKS courses, the scope of assessments has been made more sensitive to the students' history, so that questions will tend to focus on material that is most relevant to the student's current progress. This enables us to keep the assessments even shorter and to integrate them more smoothly into the students' continued progress.

What is the ALEKS Learning Mode?

In the Learning Mode, you are able to practice and eventually master specific skills in a subject. If you successfully solve a series of problems of the same type, ALEKS will add this problem type, or "topic," to your pie.

If you experience difficulty with a topic, ALEKS will attempt to help you in several ways. You will receive examples of how to solve problems from that topic in ALEKS "Explain" pages; you are also provided with definitions of terms, a comprehensive mathematics dictionary, a "Help" option and immediate feedback on your answers.

If you are not able to master a topic after repeated attempts, ALEKS will direct you back to your pie, where you can choose a different topic to work on. If you wish to change topics, you can click on the "MyPie" icon at the top of your ALEKS screen and choose another topic.

Why doesn't ALEKS always allow me to study whatever topic I want to?

ALEKS guides you through the specific curriculum your instructor has chosen. After ALEKS assesses your current Knowledge State and your goal, it will determine which topics you are ready to learn next. Other topics may not be available to you yet because ALEKS has determined that you're not yet ready to learn them. ALEKS tries to ensure that you are only learning the topics for which you have demonstrated readiness.

How do I get review in ALEKS?

There are three ways that review is provided in ALEKS. 1. One is the automatic reassessment mechanism. At regular intervals throughout your progress in ALEKS, there will be automatic reassessments of your knowledge. The purpose of these reassessments is to check your retention of what you have learned, and to require review of any material where reinforcement is needed. If you see your pie chart reduced after a reassessment, the reason is that you need review on some of the previously-learned material. 2. Also, when you log on to your ALEKS account for the first time on any given day, you may be offered review on material that you learned in your last session. You can skip this review by clicking on the MyPie button, but it is a very good idea to complete the review. It will only require a few practice problems, and it is great way to warm up before moving on to new material. It also reduces the chance that you will go backward on your next automatic reassessment. 3. Finally, you can always choose to do review by clicking on the "Review" button. When you click "Review," ALEKS will suggest some recent material that it is advisable for you to review, but you can also scroll down and choose from the entire list of topics mastered.

How should I use explanations in ALEKS?

Explanations in ALEKS are different from what you will find in most textbooks, because they are always the step-by-step solutions of particular problems. They are designed for use when you are working on a particular problem and get stuck, or make a mistake and don't know what it is. When you refer to an ALEKS explanation for help with a problem that you are working on, you can quickly compare it with the steps you followed and find where the mistake or misunderstanding occurred. Then, you go back and try again with a new problem and a better understanding of the method you should use to solve it. Note that ALEKS is focused on **active** learning. It is not necessary for you to read the explanation before beginning to work on problems for a new topic; you can do that if you prefer, but most of the time you will know enough about the new topic to attempt it right away, and then go to the explanation for support and help as needed. Please note as well that the explanations contain links to the definition of key terms, and sometimes also "Quick Notes" expanding on the more interesting or important steps in the solution of the problem.

What is "MyPie" and how do I add topics to it?

Your pie illustrates your current level of knowledge in a subject. If you roll your mouse over a "slice" of your pie, you can choose from a list of topics shown in a pop-up window that appears next to the pie slice. Not every slice is available at a given time. As you progress through the material, you will be able to access new topics until you have mastered all of them.

You fill in your pie and achieve mastery in the subject matter by working in the Learning Mode on concepts and skills that the assessment has determined you are most "ready to learn." The goal is to fill in the pie completely.

Why is "MyPie" empty after a new assessment?

Most likely, you had a recent assessment and answered "I don't know" (or "I haven't learned this yet") to every question. You will need to ask your instructor, if you are enrolled directly into his/her class, to request a new assessment. If your instructor does not have access directly to your account, please ask your instructor to contact ALEKS Customer Support to request a new assessment for you. 

 

When I click on a slice of my pie chart, why does ALEKS tell me "No Topics available'?

When you get this message, it means that the next topic(s) that you want to study from the slice have one or more prerequisite topics in other slices that you must complete first.

What is an ALEKS course product upgrade?

ALEKS course products, such as Middle School Math 3 or Algebra 2, are all being continually monitored and analyzed for ways that they can be improved. Improvements to these course products may be intended to make your students' progress smoother and more efficient, to enhance compatibility with textbooks or state standards, or to increase the value of the product in a variety of other ways. Many of these improvements are transparent, in the sense that they don't disrupt the use of the product in any way and do not require any action on the user's part. Others may require a new version of the course product. When a new version is required, we announce that an "upgrade" of the course product is available.

New versions or "upgrades" of ALEKS course products are free of charge. Normally, they are announced by email messages to all of our users and by bulletins appearing in ALEKS educator accounts, with information about the changes in the new version, and the user is encourage to schedule the upgrade at a convenient time. The upgrade can be scheduled by contacting ALEKS Corporation Customer Support and telling us what date you would like it to occur. The upgrade affects all courses (past and present) at your school or campus that use this course product, so the decision of when to upgrade should be taken by the faculty as a group. Once you tell us the date, it will take place at midnight on the date you specify. Upgrades cannot be reversed.

If you do not schedule the upgrade, it will take place automatically at a "default" date for the upgrade given in the original announcement. The default date is chosen at a time when most users are on vacation and between terms.

Upgrades to course products may alter the coverage of the course and so modify the standard pie chart display that is used to show student and class progress. When the upgrade is of this nature, all reports for that course, past and present, will be modified in accord with the new coverage. Students may need to take a new assessment after the upgrade. For these reasons, it is usually preferable not to upgrade when a term is in session and the students are working to complete their pie charts or portions of them. Also, customizations to the courses may be modified, and should be reviewed after the upgrade to be sure that they still meet your needs. We are happy to assist with this.

Finally, in some cases the upgrade to a course product may require re-installation of the ALEKS plug-in. This depends on the nature of the upgrade as well as on the time that has passed since your last plug-in installation. In general, it is a good idea to reinstall the ALEKS plug-in from time to time, whether or not it is needed for new course product versions.


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