If you have the time and the creative inclination, you can alter the appearance of your answer sheets as long as you do not alter the black-outlined answer box (for example, you cannot move or change the bubbles inside the box). This means you can include supportive text (instructions, motivational quotes, equations, space for a parent signature, etc.) or images on the front of answer sheet, and/or you can move the location of the box (see the "Print Multiple Answer Sheets per Page" lesson if you want to add multiple answer documents to a single page).
You can do this for pre-slugged answer sheets (meaning that they already feature each student's GradeCam ID number and name) or blank answer sheets (so that any student may use them). Keep in mind that you can use an answer sheet with extra spaces for a shorter test (for example, you could print answer sheets for 30 question tests and use them for tests with only 28 questions - Illuminate will simply ignore any extra question numbers when you scan, based on the number of questions on your answer key). Because the steps you are doing now can take approximately 10-15 minutes per page, you might want to create documents that you can use for many tests to save you time in the future.
As long as you don't create shapes that compete with the look of the answer box and risk confusing your GradeCam camera, your sheets should still scan. Test one to be sure the sheet you design stays within these parameters. You can create your sheet via traditional (hard copy) cut and paste or do it on your computer. This lesson will cover both approaches.
The example above shows the types of things you can do with the front of an answer sheet (notice how none of the added text or images cover the scanning box). This particular answer sheet was created using Microsoft Word 2007. This lesson will get you started customizing your own answer sheets.
Where to Start
1. Click the Assessments tab near the top of your screen.
2. Under GradeCam, click Print Answer Sheets.
Indicate Number of Questions
1. Enter the Number of Questions you would like to appear on each student's answer sheet. Keep in mind that you can use an answer sheet with extra spaces for a shorter test (for example, you could print answer sheets for 30 question tests and use them for tests with only 28 questions).
2. Click Generate to generate an answer sheet image.
Option 1: Traditional Cut and Paste
You now have two options: traditional (hard copy) cut and paste, or making the sheets on your computer.
If you plan to use scissors and tape or glue to create your sheets (that can then be photocopied to use again and again), simply:
1. Click Print and print one copy (or one set, if you are printing pre-slugged answer documents and thus plan to customize each student's answer sheet separately).
2. Cut out the box (making sure that you do not cut into the box's black outlines).
3. Arrange the box on another sheet of paper. Add other images and/or words to the sheets, as long as you do not get these inside the scanning box. See the "Cool Things to Do with Answer Sheets" lesson for numerous ideas.
4. Affix all items to the sheet, making sure that the scanning box is affixed on top (meaning none of the other text or images overlap on top of it).
If you plan to keep using your computer to create your sheets (that can then be saved and printed to use again and again), keep reading.
Option 2: Computer Cut and Paste
If you plan to keep using your computer to create your sheets (that can then be printed to use again and again), simply follow the remaining steps:
1. Now that you see one answer sheet on your screen, be sure that the image is clear (like the above image). If it is not, try increasing the size of your screen. For example, on a PC you can press the "Ctrl" button and the "+" (plus) button simultaneously on your keyboard to increase the screen size (just hit Ctrl and "-" when you want to shrink it again). On a Mac you can do the same thing, only use the Command key rather than a Ctrl key.
2. Be sure the box's entire black outline is visible on your screen. Scroll up and down (or resize your screen) if necessary so that it fits.
3. Next, capture a screen shot of the image. On a PC keyboard, simply press Ctrl and Shift and Prnt Scrn (usually in the upper-right corner of your keyboard) simultaneously, or find and use the Snipping Tool available on newer PCs. On a Mac keyboard, simply press Command and Shift and 3 simultaneously (this will add a screen shot file to your computer Desktop); or press Command and Shift and 4 simultaneously on a Mac keyboard, then hold the left click on your mouse down and drag to select the area you want (this will also add a screen shot file to your computer Desktop, but only of the area you selected).
Do not print to PDF and do not try to then capture a screen shot from the PDF. Remember: if your entire answer sheet is not showing on your screen, simply press change your screen size: on a PC you can press the "Ctrl" button and the "+" (plus) button simultaneously on your keyboard to increase the screen size (just hit Ctrl and "-" when you want to shrink it again), and on a Mac you can do the same thing, only use the Command key rather than a Ctrl key.
1. Open up Microsoft Word (or use another program you know will allow you to manipulate images). I will use Word 2007 for the remaining instructions, so please note that the version of Word you use could slightly alter the look of your screen (and thus the location and navigation for "clicking" and more).
2. Click the round Office button (very upper-left corner of your screen) and select New to create a new answer document (or press Ctrl and N simultaneously on a PC keyboard as a shortcut, or do the same thing on a Mac but use the Command key rather than a Ctrl key).
3. Click on the image of your new document (anywhere inside the page). Nothing will happen; this merely sets you up for the next step.
4. If you are using a PC, click Paste from your Home tab and then select Paste (or press Ctrl and V simultaneously on your PC keyboard as a shortcut) to paste the answer document image that you copied earlier. If you are using a Mac, either drag the image file (that you saved to your Desktop earlier) onto the page, or click Insert from your Home tab (circled in the image above in purple) and then navigate to find the Desktop file and consent to insert it into your document.
1. Click Crop.
2. Hover over one of the short black lines that now surrounds your image, click to "grab" one line at a time and (while still holding down your left mouse click) move the lines inward to crop off parts of the screen shot you don't want. Be sure that you don't remove any portion of the box's black outline. Repeat this with all sides of the image as necessary.
3. Click Text Wrapping and select In Front of Text. Notice that you are now able to move your image around the page.
4. Click the Size menu, find the Scale area of the window that appears, and change the height to 100% (this should cause the width to change to 100% as well, because Lock aspect ratio should remain checked), then click OK. This will cause your image to resize to the same size as it would ordinarily print.
5. Now click on your answer document and move it anywhere on the page that you want, as long as it will print within your printer's margins.
6. Insert or paste as many other images as you like (per the pasting and inserting instructions in #4 for the step above, preceding the above image) and add any text to your document that you want, as long as nothing enters the border of your answer box.
7. When you are finished, click the round Office button (very upper-left corner of your screen) and select Save to save your document for future use (or press Ctrl and S simultaneously on a PC keyboard as a shortcut, or do the same thing on a Mac but use the Command key rather than a Ctrl key).
If you are creating multiple pages, test scan one before creating others to be sure the size (and other aspects) is appropriate.
If you saved your document, you can open the file and print from it anytime you want to give another quiz, as long as the quiz doesn't have more question numbers.
See the "Cool Things to Do with Answer Sheets" lesson for other ideas on creative things to do with your answer sheets.