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Success Story
Busy adjunct instructor uses TestOut Office Pro to help more working students by reducing class face-to-face time from 4 hours to 1 hour a week.

Frank Lucente | Assoc. Professor at Westmoreland County Comm. College

Frank started using TestOut Office Pro and TestOut IT Fundamentals Pro online courseware in 2020. He’s seen some incredible results.

Read More

Above Average Grades
Up 22%

Kim Arlia | Adjunct professor at Central Piedmont College

Busy adjunct frees up her time while helping more non-traditional and working students by reducing face-to-face class time with TestOut Office Pro.

Read More

Weekly Face Time Savings
3 Hours

Spencer DeGraw | Professor and Program Director at Ensign College

Spencer's TestOut Pro certified IT students get the same jobs & pay as 4-year degree grads with the level playing field that TestOut courseware provides.

Read More

Exam Pass Rate
75%

Jed Patrick | IT Prog. Coordinator at Mountainland Applied Technology

TestOut Pro Certifications put students in a hands-on testing environment where they can prove what they can do.

Read More

Years Using TestOut
10+

Kris Rosenberg | Professor & Program Dir. at Oregon Institute of Technology

TestOut Pro Certifications help schools emphasis skills-based training curriculums that produce job-ready graduates.

Read More

Employment Rate
90%

Bill Baur | Professor at Sussex Community College

Professor has extra time to motivate students because TestOut Office Pro saves him hassles and headaches grading and tracking  students' progress.

Read More

More Interaction Time =
Motivation

Kimberly Arlia | Adjunct professor at Central Piedmont College

Kim Arlia got into teaching 17 years ago, as a full-time librarian. When she applied to teach her first class at Central Piedmont college, she’d never taught before. She’s outgoing, loves to be in front of her Microsoft Office class, and connecting and helping her students, even after they finish her class.

The Problem

After starting teaching, Kim soon found her schedule was hectic commuting after work to teach night classes at Piedmont and other universities in the area. At the time, she wasn’t using videos and didn’t have audio transcripts for students to listen to in their own time if they missed class. She said, “It was face-to-face and the 'look behind me, see the big board, and follow along on your computer' approach.” Teaching a wide range of students, between ages 14 to 81 who had a variety of skills that she had to adapt and customize her training to, with an “old school” approach made it quite challenging.

Later, Central Piedmont College started using an online product that had many flaws, which introduced new challenges for her. She said, “After a while I got good at knowing when the grading was skewed because it wasn’t capturing the student’s work, or half the class would do something one way and it would be marked right. Then the other half of the class would do it the same exact way and it would get marked wrong.” She shared what a pain it was to find glitches, document it, and send it in to the publisher, and wait for them to fix it.

It was a challenge teaching a wide range of students, between ages 14 to 81 who had a variety of skills that she had to adapt and customize her training to

The Solution

Midway through her career, Kim was impressed that she and three other adjunct instructors were asked by Lisa Caria at Central Piedmont College, who is now in charge of their department, to evaluate TestOut and two other products they could choose from.

She recollects, “The other options were less expensive, but they didn’t give me the “wow factor” that made us want to switch over. We were really impressed with the amount of detail we could extrapolate from TestOut and that we could choose modules or get rid of modules, and that you get a certification included. That was a big deal because it’s all about what you can put on your resume.”

She’s happy they chose TestOut because it provides all the things they’d have to create for their classrooms. It’s been the key to whittling their in-class time down from four hours a week to just one, which sets them apart and is key for attracting more non-traditional students.

The most successful way she’s found to teach is to set up her 8-week courses so students can do the labs at their own pace and chapter exams and quizzes together, so they don’t get too far ahead or skip around. This helps her to keep most students on track and in attendance. TestOut Office Pro gives Kim accurate reports that sync to her LMS, to know if her students are giving her excuses or waiting to the end of the term to cram.

Now, once a week, she’ll invite the entire class to come in with questions, comments, and labs they’re having issues with, and the rest of the class is held online. Her students think her classes are highly engaging and those who work shifts appreciate they don’t have to trek to campus nearly as often.

Two Schools,
Two Approaches

In contrast to Central Piedmont College, the university she teaches at won’t let her use TestOut. She said, “They expect instructors to create and craft all their own stuff. Each instructor needs to cover the history of computers from the inception to what are all the peripheral devices, hardware, and software, and then Word, Excel, Access, and PowerPoint. They also want you to talk about other things like the impact of social media. So, you’re pulling in all kinds of different resources.”

One instructor might focus only on three out of the four software applications, whereas another instructor may do all four, and then only deal with social media or banking. It’s not a consistent experience and it’s time consuming.

Whereas if a student takes Kim’s Piedmont college class and fails, and ends up in another instructor’s class, it’s the same class that’s taught using the same format. With TestOut Office Pro, Kim has time to cover all the material and bring in new activities with her personal touch.

Kim shared the true impact of these two different approaches on her, “At the big four-year university, I do everything on my own. I’m exhausted and having a little bit of a breakdown. Using TestOut at the community college allows me the freedom to do more and it’s more enjoyable.”

She added, “My time is a big thing. You talk about the student’s time, but it’s also my time. If I’m teaching just one course, I might have all the time in the world. With a full-time job as a librarian, my time is very valuable. I want to spend more time getting through the knowledge portion and interacting with my student, than crafting all of the stuff that leads up to it. TestOut does all that crafting for me with awesome videos, interactive transcripts, and awesome customer support. I’ve used TestOut’s support multiple times, and it is excellent.”

At the big four-year university, I do everything on my own…Using TestOut at the community college allows me the freedom to do more and it’s more enjoyable.”

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The Value of TestOut Courseware

Kim appreciates that TestOut courseware is online, interactive, and has an 18-month license. She said, “If a student complains about cost, I tell them this course will have a larger impact than taking a history class, which is not going to be as relevant to their job, skillset, or give them a higher paycheck, to help them see the value of TestOut Office Pro.”

At one university Kim taught at, they wanted to be textbook neutral. She found three textbooks online to work with to craft her own materials to give to the students, because they don’t want to charge students more. Kim pointed out, “Well, that only works so far. Students compare notes between instructors, so they know you’re not giving them an equal experience. Whereas with TestOut Office Pro, yes, it’s going to cost more and it’s going to save you time on the front end of teaching your course.”

She continued, “Most importantly, it’s going to give your students something that they can do every day in small increments that’s consistent, easy to understand, and they can review. They can see the material in multiple ways, they can read it, they can listen to it. They can interact with it. So, it’s an investment, but it’s a good investment, versus a ‘turn to page 52’ class manual that they’re going to throw away.”

It’s going to give your students something that they can do every day in small increments that’s consistent, easy to understand, and they can review in multiple ways.

Progressive Labs Lead To Success

Kim likes TestOut’s progressive labs because for novices it starts at the very beginning, opening the file, saving the file, printing the file, all the way up to much more complex tasks. In Microsoft Word, students will learn how to do references or citations for example, in a progressive way they can apply in other courses, like English class.

For Kim, using Office Pro pays off because she’s had many students come back and tell her how they were able to get a job and get certified because the progressive labs helped them actually do the work on the job, without anyone showing them how to do it.

A veteran student recently brought her a beautiful thank you gift at the library where she works. He said, “You know the Excel you taught me? I was able to help my fraternity brothers put together a spreadsheet for donations for their organization. No one else could do it, so now I’m in charge.”

Kim loves to hear her former student’s success stories and knowing she was able to help them get over a hurdle. She tells her students, “If a year from now or more you can’t remember how to do something, call me. I don’t mind. I enjoy problem solving. So, bring your problem and let’s look at it.”

Encouraging Team Collaboration
With Her Students

Kim believes teaching is about the engagement with the student and understanding where they’re at, what they want to get out of the course or their degree, and then being able to meet them in the middle.

Kim helps her students get more engaged by asking them “What’s the next step? We have an Excel spreadsheet, and we need to create a formula. What’s supposed to be in the formula?”

She believes there are a lot of teachers trying to involve their students more in decision making about the class flow, as part of the evolution of education. She reminisces, "For me, involving students more was a fluke. I was teaching at a different college, and I had a student who was a little bit of a smarty pants. He's like, 'You just think you know everything up there.' I was like, 'No, I didn't say I know everything. If you want to teach the class, go ahead.'

He got up and taught a module on Word. He did a great job and was very engaging. His peers loved learning from him. Kim thought, “If they’re willing to put themselves out there, and we can talk about what they’re doing right and wrong, then it engages everybody, and it gives me little break to see where they are in their learning. Why not?”

TestOut applauds great adjunct professors like Kim Arlia, for their dedication to their students and using TestOut to provide them with better learning experiences.

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and Intro to Computers?

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More Success Stories

Frank Lucente | Assoc. Professor at Westmoreland County Comm. College

Frank started using TestOut Office Pro and TestOut IT Fundamentals Pro online courseware in 2020. He’s seen some incredible results.

Read More

Above Average Grades
Up 22%

Kim Arlia | Adjunct professor at Central Piedmont College

Busy adjunct frees up her time while helping more non-traditional and working students by reducing face-to-face class time with TestOut Office Pro.

Read More

Weekly Face Time Savings
3 Hours

Spencer DeGraw | Professor and Program Director at Ensign College

Spencer's TestOut Pro certified IT students get the same jobs & pay as 4-year degree grads with the level playing field that TestOut courseware provides.

Read More

Exam Pass Rate
75%

Jed Patrick | IT Prog. Coordinator at Mountainland Applied Technology

TestOut Pro Certifications put students in a hands-on testing environment where they can prove what they can do.

Read More

Years Using TestOut
10+

Kris Rosenberg | Professor & Program Dir. at Oregon Institute of Technology

TestOut Pro Certifications help schools emphasis skills-based training curriculums that produce job-ready graduates.

Read More

Employment Rate
90%

Bill Baur | Professor at Sussex Community College

Professor has extra time to motivate students because TestOut Office Pro saves him hassles and headaches grading and tracking  students' progress.

Read More

More Interaction Time =
Motivation
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