Membean is designed to meet students in their "Goldilocks Zone." This means that Membean should not be too hard or too easy; it should be just right. However, there may be times when a student complains that Membean is either too hard or too easy. When this happens, they often request to recalibrate; however, recalibration is rarely the answer. Before jumping to that, consider the points in this article.
Membean is Too Easy
Some students may feel that they belong on a higher level. You can easily identify if this is the case by looking at their training data and asking yourself these questions:
- Are they training regularly and for more than 10 minutes at a time? If not, they won't be receiving many new words. Instead, they'll spend their training sessions reviewing old ones that need reinforcement. This can make Membean "feel" easy.
- Is their accuracy consistently over 90%? If not, ask them why. If Membean is so easy, they should be acing it, right?
- Are they utilizing the IKT button? If not, this can help them move on to more challenging words more quickly. They can remove words they already know from further study.
- Are they circling down? When a student finishes a word list, they will circle back to one level below where they calibrated before moving on to the next word list. In this case, many of the words should be too easy; we're just making sure there aren't any "easier" words that they simply haven't encountered. The student should utilize the IKT button.
- Did they take the calibration process seriously? If a student clicked "yes" or "no" for every word during calibration, they may be at a level that is too low for them. You can view a student's calibration responses to help you determine if they took calibration seriously.
If you answered "yes" to these questions, reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org to figure out the best course of action for the student.
Membean is Too Hard
Many times when students complain about Membean being too hard, the bigger issue is their training behavior. Digging into their training data will show you if the content itself is too hard or if the student needs to focus on improving their training behaviors. Ask yourself these questions:
- Are they spending time reviewing words they answer incorrectly? You'll be alerted if students are spending fewer than 10 seconds reviewing words they've answered incorrectly. Oftentimes students don't even realize how quickly they move through words. That pause and reflection is very important. Each time they go back to a word page, they should try to learn something new about the word.
- Are they skipping words? Sometimes students skip words that they truly do not know just so that they don't have to learn them. This comes back to bite them when those words show up on a quiz. The student skips words during training and then scores poorly on quizzes, which leads to them claiming Membean is too hard. If you have a student who is skipping words they don't truly know, disable the IKT button.
- Do they need extended time? If students are getting questions wrong because the clock is running out on them, consider giving them extra time.
- Have you tried Strong Memory Mode? This setting will slow the introduction of new words so that students can spend more time reinforcing existing ones. They'll see new words less often, but they'll learn each word they see better. This is the perfect setting for students who are struggling during training.
- Have you marked them as ESL/ELL? Marking a student as ESL/ELL adjusts several settings to aid in the learning process, such as providing extended time and issuing our most challenging question types less frequently.
- Are they having trouble focusing? Have them try splitting their training into 5-10 minute sessions. Some students simply can't remain focused for extended periods of time. Breaking sessions up can help.
- Do they have testing anxiety? Some students get distracted by the progress timer ticking away. If you have a student with testing anxiety, you can hide progress timers. They will still have the same amount of time to answer the questions, but they won't see the timer itself.
If a student is still struggling after you've tried adjusting their training preferences and curbed poor training behavior, reach out to us at email@example.com.