A Free Online Mathematics
    Assessment and Course
      Management System

David Lippman                  Melonie Rasmussen
 Lead Developer                          Muse & #1 Fan
                  Pierce College
                  Lakewood, Washington
                                         2009 AMATYC Conference
  What is IMathAS / WAMAP?
IMathAS: Internet Math Assessment System
 Web-based math assessment engine
 Learning management system
 Algorithmically generated questions
 Computer grading of numerical and math expression
 Accurate math and graph display
 Open-source software

WAMAP: Washington Math Assessment & Placement
 Thousands of existing questions from arithmetic through
 20+ pre-built courses
 Free IMathAS web hosting for Washington schools
              A Brief History
   Started exploring placement alternatives
   Got frustrated with publisher systems
   Built something for myself, invited some others
    to start playing with it
   Got some state-level support to make a hosted
    site available for free
   Got some grant money for some content
    development and system support time
   An online community of users developed
 serves 3500+ students/ quarter
             A Brief History
   $30,000 from Washington State eLearning
    Council for content development
   $80,000 from the Transition Math Project
    (Gates foundation funded) for content
    development and user training and
   Mostly a labor of love
   Immediate feedback
   Unlimited practice
   Automated grading
   Encourage collaboration without cheating
   Facilitate communication
   Online grade tracking
           Instructor Perception
              Survey Results



      Retention                                  Similar

Student Practice

                   0%   25%   50%   75%   100%
A Student Survey
 (fully online class using WAMAP)
              How’s it Different?
   The Advantages
       Truly free – no cost for students with used books
       Not tied to a publisher – questions are categorized by
        topic, not book section
       Community created content
       Community support
       Flexibility of a learning management system

   The Disadvantages
       We leave the teaching to humans - No tutorials,
        videos, etc.
       Pre-built courses are not yet developed for all texts
          How It Can Be Used
   Drill and practice
   Homework
   Take-home, in-class tests/quizzes
   Extended projects, group assignments
   Active Learning activities
   Encourage communication
   Track student progress
   Share info with students
   Fully online courses
   Diagnostics / Mass assessment
            Want to try it out?
   Log in to
   To try it out as a student, log on with:
       Username & Password: demo
   To get an tester instructor account, click
    the Classroom tab, click on the “New
    Instructor Account Request” and send in
    your info. Your account will be set up in a
    few days or less.
   Read the Getting Started guide to get
    familiar with the system, or watch some
    videos in the training course.
    Want to use it (long term)?
   We don’t currently have capacity to host
    everyone at (at least not yet).
   Visit to learn how to
    download the software. It requires a web
    host with PHP and MySQL.
   For a single school, it can run fine on a
    cheap $5/month hosting plan.

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