Scholar 2 to be unveiled soon


by Sarah Stout & David Talley

Get ready students, Scholar 2 is taking over campus starting August 2012.

Scholar is the online source for students to turn in assignments and take exams and quizzes, as well as a way for professors to communicate important links and information to their classes.

The current Scholar is becoming outdated and flawed, so Simpson is keeping up with the trends by launching Scholar 2 on campus.

Simpson has tested the program with 13 professors this semester to work out the kinks before it becomes required campus wide. John Bolen, assistant professor of religion, is one professor testing the new scholar.

“You discover as you navigate and so students won’t have any problem,” Bolen said. “If they were able to navigate through the old Scholar they won’t have any problems with the new one.”

Professors are expected to have an easier time with Scholar than in the past.

“As an instructor, I’m given more flexibility with some of the things I can do with Scholar,” Bolen said. “The new Scholar will have a better flow to it and I think instructors will find it very useful.”

This new technology has a sleeker appearance and is meant to be easier to follow for students. Not only does Scholar 2 have a new look but it also includes: better customization, advanced grading options and works better with web browsers.

Academic Software Specialist, Chuck Johnson, helped with one of its major additions: the improvements of the mobile interface.

“The new mobile interface is a very welcome addition to the software, we have been working with it and it works well on the Android OS and iOS (iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch) platforms,” Johnson said. “It automatically detects what you are using and uses the appropriate interface.”

Julie Summers, assistant professor of communications, was asked to test this program out because she often uses Scholar in her classes.

“I chose to test it on my night class because it is a smaller group of students, and it is self contained with shorter classes,” Summers said.

Junior Sarah Morgan is using the new Scholar 2 in her Education 118 course.

“The new Scholar was easy to use and to transition to,” Morgan said. “The new program is meant to be an improvement from the old Scholar and is not meant to confuse students in any way.”

This new Scholar offers some changes that are meant to improve its function. Summers has many online quizzes and exams and she found that the new Scholar offers a greater benefit to students.

“For the quiz or a test it tells you what questions you have not answered before you submit it — if you have left one blank or not,” Summers said. “It works similar to what you can do on paper tests for students. There is no clock function, according to my students. From a student perceptive the functionality was not very different so they were not prevented from doing their work.”

“The coolest thing is when you are taking a test you can mark questions by putting a red flag on questions you want to come back and double check,” Morgan said.

Scholar 2 functions similar to the old Scholar with a few minor changes.

“First, it was just something different and I had to learn how to use it,” Morgan said. “But only some stuff is different like where turn in assignment has changed but I am getting used to using it.”

Scholar 2 will be used campus wide starting in the 2012-2013 school year.