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MOS Exams - General Questions

Kimberly_Atkinson
Contributor

Hello, Everyone,

 

I am trying to find ways to improve and prepare my students for a MOS Exam. Currently, the MOS Exam is free for students to complete and is offered about two times a year. We offer the 2016 exam. I was wondering if anyone could help answer some questions I have.

 

  1. What methods does your school use to prepare students for the MOS Exam?
  2. How often in a year does your school offer the MOS Exam? Is it at certain times in the semester (e.g., only Fall Semester), or can students request to take them at any time?
  3. How does your department/division advertise MOS Exams? Is it an effective method?
  4. Can any student in any major take the MOS Exam, or is it a requirement for the student to be enrolled in a Microsoft course, such as Word Processing, Excel, etc.?
  5. Can staff and/or faculty take the MOS Exam free of charge?
  6. Approximately, how many students take the exams each time it is offered at your school?
  7. How is your success rate with students passing the MOS Exams? Is it over 70% or less?

Currently, I have students who I know who can pass the MOS Exam, but not self-confidence to attempt the exam.

 

Any help would be greatly appreciated. 

 

Kimberly

 

Sandy_Keeter
Mentor

Hey Kimberly!

 

First of all, how did you get this for free for your students?

 

We received some free vouchers one year from a grant, and any student in any of our classes could use them (not faculty and not random students on campus).  It was not a mandatory part of our class. We had 100 vouchers and students requested them from us one at a time. They had to return to us with their score before they could ask for another.

 

The vouchers expired before we could use them all (approximately 3 years).  We had about 5 students a month test and 4/5 would typically pass so I thought that was pretty good!  Those that requested vouchers were my best students.

 

Students were well prepared by taking our Introductory and Advanced Computing classes (Shelly Cashman series) and doing weekly SAM Exams and Projects that correlated with our Modules.  We also assigned the SAM MOS exams sprinkled throughout the course, after we finished each application module for practice.

 

I hope this helps!

 

sandy

 

 

 

 

Cengage
Cengage

Thank you for the insights into your program, Sandy!  

 

Kimberly, in addition to the MOS simulated pre-built exams within SAM, we have also mapped out SAM tasks to the Learning Objectives of the MOS exam for additional MOS prep through our Trainings and Exams

 

Let us know if you have any other questions!

Kimberly_Atkinson
Contributor

Hello, Sandy,

 

Thank you for the information!

 

As far as I know, our school has a license agreement in order for our students to take the MOS Exam. I can find out more information if you would like. 

 

Kimberly

Sandy_Keeter
Mentor

Yes, I'd love to know!  Somehow your school is paying for them...Smiley Happy

Thanks,

sandy

Kimberly_Atkinson
Contributor

I am trying to find out who is paying for the vouchers/licenses - hopefully, I will find out an answer. 

 

-Kimberly

Kimberly_Atkinson
Contributor

I asked around and was told that the division I work in purchases the vouchers every year. This is as far as the conversation went. 

dagraham
Commenter

Hi Kimberly,

I would like to know more about how your institution set up the exam for your students to take it free.

Any information you can provide would be helpful.

I just had this discussion with some of my colleagues and we discussing writing a grant for this endeavor.

 

Thanks for sharing.

D'Nita

Stephen_J_Padilla
Mentor

Just as a bit of a side note here, when I was taking my MOS exams for the Big Four, 2016 edition, I used a practice test package from G*Metrix.  The system was so glitchy that even when using it in practice mode--where you can click "Hint" and get step by step instructions--it still failed to give credit for correct procedures and results.  I wish I'd been using this stuff you've been talking about!

da_instructor
New Member

Lot's of good questions regarding the Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS):

 

  1. What methods does your school use to prepare students for the MOS Exam? 
    - I am using a competitor product to teach an MIS class with MS Office components, a little MS Access (first few chapters) and a bit more MS Excel. The material is similar to the New Perspective series and SAM/Mindtab and should prepare enough. These books usually have pages where they show all content mapped to the MOS objectives. Our library also provides digital access to the actual Microsoft MOS study guides, and I placed one each in the library reserve in print. E.g. https://www.amazon.com/2016-Study-Guide-Microsoft-Excel/dp/0735699437
  2. How often in a year does your school offer the MOS Exam? Is it at certain times in the semester (e.g., only Fall Semester), or can students request to take them at any time? 
    - I am currently the admin / teacher / proctor and offer testing 4 times in each Fall and Spring semester.
  3. How does your department/division advertise MOS Exams? Is it an effective method?
    - I promote it in my classes and will put posters now and banners. You can ask for free promo material here with your test center ID: http://learn.certiport.com/programkit
  4. Can any student in any major take the MOS Exam, or is it a requirement for the student to be enrolled in a Microsoft course, such as Word Processing, Excel, etc.?
    - I teach an Information Systems class, we only sponsor Excel and Access at this time. I encourage current students in that class or former ones. I don't verify when or how they took this class, so essentially I take anyone right row.
  5. Can staff and/or faculty take the MOS Exam free of charge? 
    - The site license codes in general are OK to be used by staff/faculty, and I encouraged a few but nobody dared yet.
  6. Approximately, how many students take the exams each time it is offered at your school?
    - I offered a few time slots on 2 days a week, roughly 40-50 signed up in October.
  7. How is your success rate with students passing the MOS Exams? Is it over 70% or less?
    - For Excel Specialist (Core) it is 70%, for the Expert exam at 20%, for the MS Access exam it was only 10%. We're still learning. For MOS the wording is a not as precise and due to the time limit, students really need to know their trade. Many of our students were not properly prepared. I hope to improve this in December and Spring next year. I plan on holding info events and promote the resources to study for the exam.

    FYI, anyone reading this and interested, here is how you buy codes or can become your own test center: 
    Buy codes: https://certiport.pearsonvue.com/Buy/School
    Become a test center: https://certiport.pearsonvue.com/Educator-resources/Get-started