ALEKS - Assessment and Learning

Implementation Strategies

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

Valley High School, West Des Moines Community Schools
West Des Moines, IA

Grade(s): 10 - 12
Scenario: Computer Lab
Purpose: Intervention
ALEKS Portion of Curriculum: 100%
Time Spent in ALEKS: 2 hours per week, 18 hours per term
ALEKS Course: Middle School Math Course 2, Middle School Math Course 3, Algebra 1

Ryan Cooley, Mathematics Teacher
It's been very good for our English Language Learners (ELL) students. It allows us to find out what they know mathematically without a language barrier.


What challenges did the class or school face in math prior to using ALEKS?
Communication with non-English speaking students.

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

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


How do you implement ALEKS?
We recently took six of our non English speaking students and started them on ALEKS.   

Do you cover ALEKS concepts in a particular order?
We attempt to follow an Algebra course.

How do you structure your class period with ALEKS?
ALEKS constitutes the entire class period.

How did you modify your regular teaching approach as a result of ALEKS?
After using ALEKS, I can provide more one-on-one assistance.

How often are students required or encouraged to work on ALEKS at home?
My students are not required to work at home, as none of them have Internet access.

How do you cultivate parental involvement and support for ALEKS?
I sent letters to each of their parents, and also had a translator call.


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?

How do you incorporate ALEKS into your grading system?
ALEKS exams are 40 percent, and their daily work counts for 30 percent of their grade.

Do you require students to make regular amounts of progress in ALEKS?
I monitor progress one-on-one, and also gauge progress by the amount of time they spend in ALEKS.

Learning Outcomes

Since using ALEKS, please describe the learning outcomes or progress you have seen.
My ELL students don't mind coming to class at all now that they know they can learn in their first language.

Best Practices

Are there any best practices you would like to share with other teachers implementing ALEKS?
I feel that finding a balance between patience and pushing the student to do more is important.