What is ALEKS?
From the company website:
Assessment and LEarning in Knowledge Spaces is a Web-based, artificially intelligent assessment and learning system. ALEKS uses adaptive questioning to quickly and accurately determine exactly what a student knows and doesn't know in a course. ALEKS then instructs the student on the topics she is most ready to learn. As a student works through a course, ALEKS periodically reassesses the student to ensure that topics learned are also retained. ALEKS courses are very complete in their topic coverage and ALEKS avoids multiple-choice questions. A student who shows a high level of mastery of an ALEKS course will be successful in the actual course she is taking.
ALEKS (Assessment and LEarning in Knowledge Spaces) can provide you with the instruction and support you need to homeschool your children in mathematics for grades 3-12. ALEKS is accessible from virtually any computer with Internet access, making it a flexible and mobile educational solution for your children.
ALEKS is a Research-Based Online Math Program:
- Complete Curriculum Solution for Math with Access to Full Course Library
- No Textbook Required
- Artificial Intelligence Targets Gaps in Student Knowledge
- Assessment and Individualized Learning for Grades 3-12
- Master Account - Monitor and Direct Learning Progress
- Unlimited Online Access - PC & Mac Compatible
From there the students can click on a pie wedge and choose a topic to work on. This is where the student is taught the concept. It must be read by the student so it's necessary for your student to be a fluent reader.
Students can also choose on the Quick Tables. This is where the student would practice math facts. If the student masters enough of the table they are given an opportunity to play various math games.
It's very easy for parents to see how the student is progressing by just checking in the master account or you can even receive weekly email updates.
The interface is very basic. You read the lesson and then do the practice problems. Quite a few times my daughter, who is not a visual learner when it comes to math, needed me be to right there with her to offer some more hands-on tips. It kind of defeated the purpose of computer instruction.
There wasn't a lot of color, cuteness, or visual appeal for my daughter. From the start, the lack of extras rubbed Mackenzie the wrong way. She was looking for some kind of feed back or encouragement such as a smiling character or a cheerful sound for a job well done. Because of the lack of bells & whistles I would probably recommend this program for older students.
That being said, there is a lot about it that I liked from a parental stand point. The intelligent design makes the instruction very focused on what your child needs to work on and the record keeping for the parents is spot on. My daughter did like the pie chart a lot. Every time she mastered something on the chart she would eagerly tell me about it.
While this isn't the program for us right now, it is something that I'm going to keep in mind for when she's more independent in math. I can see this program being a wonderful resource for helping us through more upper level math courses.
I also have to mention how wonderful their customer service was. I was having some difficulty loading the program onto my Mac and their tech support got me up and running in minutes. They get two thumbs up from me.
Age Range: K-12
Pricing: $19.95/student/month, or $99.95/6 months, or $179.95 for 12 months
Try it FREE for two weeks HERE.
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Disclaimer: I received a free trial of this program for review purposes. All opinions are my own.