What's new in Mastering

Find out what's new for Mastering by reviewing this list.

December 2018

Instructor features

Grading: Give full credit for a part question in an assigned item
Instructors can grant full credit to all students in the course for any part in an assigned item. You may want to grant part credit if there’s a known issue with a part question or if students found the question confusing. More about granting credit for part

Creating/Editing assignments: Easier searches for the best learning content

  • Featured Items: These usually appear at the top of your search results. Featured Items provide students with hints, wrong answer feedback, and extra support, like math remediation. Note that items already assigned don’t appear in the Featured Items list. More about Featured items
  • My Favorites: After you tag items as favorites, use the My Favorites filter to find items you’ve already previewed and decided to assign. More about My Favorites
  • "" Card View: Provides item information in a format that you can scan quickly. When applicable, Card View shows thumbnails of images or video. Previously, only List View was available for library items.

Course Home improvements (More about the Course Home)

  • Search by student name to open a student’s score page. This search box is in the Performance area of the Course Home page. The Scores page for an individual student that opens has also been redesigned to more closely match what each student sees for this page.
  • Recent and due next assignment information: Up to 5 Recently Due and up to 5 Due Next assignment cards are now available in the Assignments area of the Course Home. (Previously only one card was provided for each of these.) The cards show the due date, the average student score, and how many students in the course completed the assignment. collapsedShow me an image

Labeling answer type available in the Simple Editor: Instructors can now create labeling items using the Simple Editor. How to edit or create a labeling question using the Simple Editor

Student features

Practice mode is more easily available when students rework an assignment. Based on the assignment default setting, students can redo items for practice after they’ve completed a Homework assignment and its due date has passed. When students select Practice from the assignment item list, practice mode now stays on as students navigate among the items in an assignment. Previously, students had to select the Practice button for each item.

Students can review the applicable book section while answering questions. When students select Review, they can refer to the applicable section in the eText or in their print textbook for help in answering an item’s questions. The eText link feature for Review is not available for PDF eTexts. collapsedShow sample Review option

Adaptive Follow-Ups: Parent assignment completion is no longer required for test out.
Students can test out of doing an Adaptive Follow-Up assignment when they meet or exceed the test out score on a Parent assignment.

Enhancements to unpenalized wrong answer feedback:
Unpenalized answer feedback says “No credit has been lost; try again.” to encourage students to keep trying to answer the question. When applicable, a link may also be provided for related information or math remediation. collapsedShow sample updated wrong answer response

Graphing answer type: In student view, graphing questions are now in HTML5 format which can be screen reader and keyboard accessible. Previously, graphing questions relied on Flash technology. Note that fractional values, such as 4/5, are not supported as points in line graphs.

June 29, 2018

Course Home: Refreshed design with at-a-glance class results
Jump to key tasks to get your course ready from the Getting Started area. Average score and completion status is shown for the next and previous assignments. Check the average score for the course and use quick links into the Gradebook. Similar to the student experience, the new instructor course menu can be hidden for more room to work. You can also collapse sections to streamline your vertical view. For other details, see Get acquainted with the Course Home.

Item Library: A smoother content search experience
Define the kinds of content you’re looking for within a more compact working space. Matching items appear in real time—you no longer need to apply filters. More on searching for items in the Item Library

Assignments: Summary data provided on Overview page
The Overview page for a standard Mastering assignment now provides the average score and completion status for the assignment, in addition to item-by-item results. Make selections to compare the performance of your students with all other Mastering students who have completed the same items. Some of this information was provided on the former Summary View page.

Any eText customizations now preserved when you copy a Mastering course.
When you add bookmarks, highlights and notes, or reorder the table of contents for an eText in a course, these customizations are copied into the eText of the course copy. The course copy must be based on the same edition textbook.

Student assignment experience: No longer in a new window or tab
This provides a more uniform student experience when working in the course. Some assignment content may still launch in a new window or tab.

December 19, 2017

  • Assignment messages: Enhanced formatting options, including ability to add link to eText.
    A new editor is available when adding messages or special instructions to students for assignment items. The editing toolbar provides options to format text, insert special characters, add links into the eText associated with your course, and more.
  • Vector drawing: Create or edit vector questions in the Simple Editor.
    Formerly, students needed the Flash player to work with vector or moment questions, but now all vector moment questions are in an HTML5 tool. Creating vector moment questions in the Simple Editor (vs the Advanced Editor) lets you add hotspots with descriptions to identify elements in the workspace for students using a keyboard or screen reader. Refer to Simple Editor help for instructions about editing or creating vector questions.

Accessibility updates

  • Enhancements to student assignment and score pages
    Assignment score information, assignment item list, and the grading policy have been simplified to be clearer to students. These pages have also been made accessible to keyboard navigation and screen readers.
  • Improved accessibility for different answer types.
    The following answer types now support keyboard navigation and/or screen readers: Numeric value or symbolic expression, numeric value with unit, chemical formula, sorting, and ranking. The vocabulary (matching) and labeling answer types are keyboard accessible. The new vector moment answer type also supports keyboard and/or screen readers, although some content may require updates (like to add hotspots with descriptions using the Simple Editor) to be accessible.

July 20, 2017

  • Student Course Home: New calendar view with daily agenda
    In addition to the List View of assignments, students can now choose Calendar View from the student Course Home on a computer. The calendar’s daily agenda makes it easy for students to check for upcoming assignments when they sign in to the course.

    Daily agenda when NO assignment is due: Students may see a message like “Nothing due today”, and “Next assignment due in x days” or “2 assignments due in 5 days”.

    Daily agenda for assignment due dates: Students can open the assignments to work on them. Each assignment shows its name and type, due date and time, any prerequisite assignment (for an Adaptive Follow Up), completion status, and score. collapsedShow me a sample daily agenda with assignments listed


    For more about the student Calendar View: See the topic Assignment Due Date and Availability in Mastering Student Help.

  • Dynamic Study Modules: New initial answer instructions and "continue" button
    The instructions students see upon opening their first available Dynamic Study Module have been simplified. Also, a new “continue” button has been added to improve the chance that students will read and understand the instructions before they close them. collapsedShow me the initial on-screen answer instructions for students

    "Instructions to click once if you are unsure, click twice if you are sure, and you can submit up to two choices if you are unsure of your answer"