It's summer, and that means it's time for us to roll out the new features here at Vocabulary.com. We always look forward to this time of year, because we get to show off all the goodies we've been working on for months. We hope you enjoy them!

 

Assess with less stress. Announcing Quizzes!

Get the lowdown on your students' improvement by assigning them a custom quiz.

Create a quiz from any vocabulary list — test the whole list or a subset of words. Can't decide? We'll suggest words and questions for your quiz based on the past performance of your students. Then easily customize your quiz by selecting which meanings to test and which questions to include — choose from our ever-expanding library of over 180,000 questions.

Make custom quizzes in seconds!

When you assign a quiz, each student in your class will see the same questions, but in a random order (with the choices randomized). That makes it a perfect way to assess your students either before or after an assignment. In contrast to List Practice (which is adaptive), quizzes allow you to make an apples-to-apples comparison between your students.

Of course, you'll also get detailed reporting on how your students did on every quiz you assign. See individual and average scores, overall progress, time taken, and many other stats. You can also easily drill down to the word and question level to see how your classes fared on individual items.

Quizzes are available to all of our paid Educator Edition plans. Get started today for as little as $4 / month.

Assignable Spelling Bees

Now you can assign a Spelling Bee to your classes and see the results of spelling bees in your teacher dashboards.

Spelling bees are a great way for younger students to get started with Vocabulary.com — simply make a word list, and assign a spelling activity to your classes. Students will have to spell each word on the list correctly — if they miss a word, they have to keep trying until they correctly spell each word on the list. In your reports, you'll see which words your class struggled with, as well as individual and average scores and time taken.

More Control Over Assignments & Due Dates

Do you like to prepare for next week's assignments over a glass of wine on Saturday evening? Well, now your students don't have to know, since you can control when your assignments become visible to your students. Choose a date and time when your assignment will become visible, and your students won't be notified until then!

We've also added a time component to due dates. So now you can assign an activity (like a quiz, or other in-class assignment) that becomes visible right as your class starts and is due at the end of class. If students are late, we'll show you how late they are in your reports, so that you can decide how much of a stickler you want to be.

Changes for Students: New Assignments & Activities section

Because we've added more activities (like Quizzes and Spelling Bees), we've reorganized and redesigned a number of pages in the My Account section. We've removed List Practice from the My Lists page, and consolidated it with the "My Assignments" page into the new Assignments & Activities page. Here, you'll find all of the work you've been doing on Vocabulary.com — whether it was assigned to you, or you did it on your own. See upcoming assignments, work in progress, or completed activities all in one handy place.

We've also changed the sorting in this section to surface new assignments and assignments that are due soon. We'll add a "new" icon to assignments that have been assigned in the past 3 days.

Improvements to List Practice

We've improved List Practice by making it both slightly harder and slightly easier to finish. Now, if we're confident you know the word, we may give you fewer questions on it. Now when you do a Practice activity, you'll start with the core meanings of each word and work your way through the more peripheral meanings.

Also, if you choose a specific meaning when editing your list, we'll start by testing that meaning when you (or your students) practice that list. So, if you're creating a list about genetics that contains the word nuclear we'll test the cellular meaning before the other meanings. Ideal for all those cross-curricular list creators out there!

Finally, when you are in the final stages of practicing a list (and you've mastered most of the words in the list), we'll bring in a few questions from other words in your learning program (no more than two per round). This means that now, if you only use List Practice, you'll still get some brush-up on words you've had trouble with in the past.

Scoring Changes

We've changed our scoring algorithm to encourage students to "explore new territory" rather than retread over the same ground. So now, if you practice a list multiple times, you'll see that the points you get per question begin to decline. Like before, you'll get 100 points the first time you see a question and 75 points the second. But now, you'll subsequently only get 50, 25, 15, and 10 points as you answer the same question multiple times.

Other Improvements

New layout of charts in my progress / my classes / school reports:

We've reorganized the charts and stats you'll see in all reports to make them more readable.

New "Activities" tab on lists:

You can now click on the Activities tab on any list to see all the previous activities you've completed on that list.

See past activities and resume any activity:

If you restarted a Practice session and started again, you can now resume a previously unfinished activity (or see the results of finished activities) by clicking on the "Activities" tab for that list and clicking on the activity in the list, or by going to the Assignments & Activities page.

So there you have it! We hope you enjoy using these new features! Stay tuned — summer is feature season here at Vocabulary.com, and it's not over yet!