ALEKS - Assessment and Learning

Implementation Strategies

View a selection of implementation strategies from educators who are successfully using ALEKS to achieve dramatic learning outcomes. 

Submit your ALEKS implementation strategy by completing our online survey.

Bellingham High School, Bellingham School District
Bellingham, WA

Grade(s): 9 - 12
Scenario: Computer Lab
Purpose: Supplement
ALEKS Portion of Curriculum: 75%
Time Spent in ALEKS: 1 hour per week, 15 hours per term
ALEKS Course: Algebra 1

Jill Helms, Teacher
ALEKS has been an amazing support to my Algebra 1 students. Many skills that we learn in class need to be reinforced throughout the year, and ALEKS provides that essential review. Students are given the opportunity to choose the topics they need help with and this encourages their desire to learn.


Scenario

What challenges did the class or school face in math prior to using ALEKS?
It has always been a challenge to "back-fill." When students come to us who are weak in areas from previous math courses, we struggle to find time to work with them one-on-one to help. ALEKS has been this support we've been looking for.

How many days per week is class time dedicated to ALEKS?
1 day per week.

What is the average length of a class period when ALEKS is used?
65 minutes.


Implementation

How do you implement ALEKS?
We work on ALEKS every Friday.

Do you cover ALEKS concepts in a particular order?
I allow students to navigate through the topics themselves. This gives them a sense of ownership of their learning.

How do you structure your class period with ALEKS?
Every Friday we go into the computer lab and work on ALEKS the entire time.

How did you modify your regular teaching approach as a result of ALEKS?
I make sure to fit in my curriculum instruction in Monday-Thursday. Friday is designated for ALEKS.

How often are students required or encouraged to work on ALEKS at home?
I've encouraged my students to work on ALEKS at home but many of my students do not have access to a computer.

How do you cultivate parental involvement and support for ALEKS?
Parents are notified of the program. They know it is a service paid for by the district and that they can assist their children at home.


Grading

Is ALEKS assigned to your students as all or part of their homework responsibilities? If so, what part of the total homework load is it?
No, it is just for class participation.

How do you incorporate ALEKS into your grading system?
ALEKS is incorporated into my students' grades as part of the participation category. This category is worth 20 percent of their overall grade.

Do you require students to make regular amounts of progress in ALEKS?
I monitor my students as they work in the lab every Friday so I see that progress is happening.


Learning Outcomes

Since using ALEKS, please describe the learning outcomes or progress you have seen.
As a district (and state), we require students to know many skills. So, on top of working our way through the textbook, we have to make sure their skills stay strong in all of the learning targets. ALEKS is a great way to keep these skills refreshed. Most of my students have noticed an improvement in their skills. At times they feel frustrated, but, by the end of the day, they are thankful ALEKS has helped them strengthen their abilities.