Updates to Web-based Testing and Assessment System Enable Colleges and Universities to Enhance Modern Post-secondary Mathematics Education
WATERLOO, CANADA, August 18, 2005 - Maplesoft™, the leading provider of high-performance software tools for engineering, science and mathematics, announced today the availability of Maple T.A.™ 2.5. The upgraded Web-based testing and assessment system is integrated with Maple 10, Maplesoft’s powerful math engine, and its new Equation Editor. Maple T.A. 2.5 also includes updates to the Assignment Editor, Question Bank Editor and Class Management. These updates enable colleges and universities to further enhance modern post-secondary mathematics education.
Maple T.A.’s integration of the new Maplesoft Equation Editor provides access to the editor in all question types, as well as delivering improved formatting of expressions and enhanced preview capabilities. The new plotmaple command enables Maple plots to be created as algorithmic variables and used in questions, hints, feedback and solutions. Maple-graded questions in Maple T.A. 2.5 can now be programmed to provide partial credit, grading students’ responses with a mark between 0 and 1. And, with the integration of Maple 10, Maple T.A. 2.5 provides access to the new functionality of the latest release of Maple. With these enhancements, teachers are able to create more sophisticated questions, create questions in less time and distribute richer content to their students.
The upgrades to the Maple T.A. Assignment Editor include a new layout, the ability to view a summary or hide an assignment directly from the main menu, and automatic locking of assignments in use to ensure data integrity. The Question Bank Editor contains improvements to the Algorithmic Editor and the display of questions for editing. Additional enhancements to Class Management provide for smoother and more robust deployment, minimal downtime and enable institutions to service larger classes.
"Maple T.A. 2.5 combines Maplesoft’s extensive education experience with the best general assessment technology," said Jim Cooper, CEO of Maplesoft. "The availability of Maple T.A. 2.5 makes online testing and assessment even easier and more cost-effective. It also further demonstrates Maplesoft’s commitment to deliver progressive instruction to students in mathematics, science and engineering."
Launched in 2002, Maple T.A is used in colleges and universities worldwide. For instance, the State University of New York (SUNY) at Stony Brook relies on Maple T.A. to administer placement tests every year to assess students’ level of math knowledge and to enroll students in the appropriate courses.
In the math admissions package, SUNY Stony Brook refers students to a Web site where they are able to practice questions and perform the test at a time that best suits them, when they feel most comfortable and prepared. As a result, SUNY Stony Brook has completely automated their placement test process, which has reduced the stress and chaos of registration day and better prepared students for the exam since students can take it from the comfort of their home. With Maple T.A., professors also are able to concentrate on the students and not the exam and timing.
In addition to the Maple T.A. 2.5 upgrade, the Maple T.A. Building Block™ for Blackboard Learning System™ (Release 6) has also been upgraded. The Maple T.A. Building Block is a tool that provides integration of the Maple T.A. online testing and assessment system with the Blackboard Learning System. Upgrades include: a Maple T.A. instructor control panel, which allows access to all the Maple T.A. functionality from one link; navigation improvements; and values for login names and class names that adhere to the Blackboard requirements. The course management components of Blackboard combined with the testing and assessment capabilities of Maple T.A. provide a full-featured system for mathematics and other technical courses.
Pricing and Availability
Maple T.A. 2.5 is available for single classes, departments and entire institutions. For single classes of less than 100 students, instructors can implement the system for less than $1000 US. Institutions can either host the system on their servers or choose a Maplesoft hosted option. Maplesoft offers free pilot classes to interested instructors who need to evaluate the system. For more information contact Maplesoft Sales at 1-800-267-6583, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit http://www.maplesoft.com. Outside of the United States and Canada, contact a Maplesoft reseller partner. A list of partners is available at http://www.maplesoft.com/contact/international.
Maplesoft is a leading developer and provider of interactive mathematical software. Its suite of products includes Maple, the most powerful and intuitive tool for solving complex mathematical problems and creating rich, executable technical documents; MapleNet, a Web-based platform for sharing Maple content for collaboration and e-learning; and Maple T.A., a Web-based system for creating tests, assignments and exercises, automatically assessing student responses and performance. Its standards-compliant algorithms are renowned for their speed, accuracy and reliability. In addition, Maplesoft leads the market with innovations that make the management of technical knowledge – whether in industry, or in a classroom – more effective and efficient. Over two million users at thousands of organizations benefit from advanced Maple technology. The Maplesoft commercial customer base includes Boeing, Bosch, Canon and NASA. Additionally, virtually every major university and research institute in the world, including MIT, Stanford, Oxford and Waterloo, has adopted Maplesoft products to enhance their education and research activities. For more information, visit www.maplesoft.com.