Readiness Checks in Math Units

Note: This feature is currently only for Math 6 Unit 6: Expressions and Equations and Algebra 1 Unit 5: Introduction to Exponential Equations. In Fall 2022, the Math Units and Projects listed in this table will have Readiness Checks.

This article covers:

Overview of Readiness Checks

What is a Readiness Check?

Readiness Checks are a short series of assessment items teachers can assign to classes before or at the beginning of a project or unit. Readiness Checks allow teachers to gather information about students:

  • Background knowledge
  • Understanding of concepts 
  • Skills that are prerequisites to the upcoming project or unit

All questions are auto-scored, meaning there is no manual scoring required by teachers. After the Readiness check is complete, teachers can use student performance data to adjust lessons based on suggested actions like adding, deleting, or modifying specific project/unit materials. 

Readiness Checks don’t affect students’ grades. However, they do provide students with a preview of the project/unit and create anticipation around what they will engage with during the project/unit. Readiness Checks are designed to be a learning experience for students, rather than solely an evaluation of knowledge.

What do Readiness Checks look like?

Readiness Checks vary in length, but should take students less than 15 minutes. They include a combination of item types, including multiple-choice, multiple select, matching, and graphing questions. 

Where can I find information about the purpose of each Readiness Check? 

Each Readiness Check is accompanied by a Teacher's Guide. For each question, the Teacher's Guide provides:

  • An answer key
  • Aligned standards
  • A description of where students will need these skills during the project/unit
  • Guidance on how to support students who need more help or who demonstrate understanding of each item 

See Where can I find the Teacher's Guide? 

How should I interpret student performance on a Readiness Check?

Readiness Check data can be used to identify students’ understanding of prerequisite background knowledge, concepts, and skills that students need during the upcoming project or unit.

Readiness Check data may suggest adding extra practice with some of the project/unit’s content, or show an opportunity to move more quickly through a topic to optimize instructional time. Review data in the Platform and use the platform-recommended actions to adjust your instructional plan. See Adjusting lesson plans based on student results for more information.

When deciding how to adjust your project or unit plan, it’s important to remember that additional support should occur when this information is needed by students. Avoid starting a project or unit with review lessons and instead carefully select which days’ instruction you want to adjust. Readiness Checks help with this by recommending activities to alter or replace on specific days.

Assigning Readiness Checks

How should Readiness Checks be administered?

Prior to starting, or at the beginning of, a new project or unit:

  1. Assign the Readiness Check to each of your course sections.
  2. Analyze the Readiness Check data.
  3. Adjust your project/unit plan based on Readiness Check data. 

Assigning a Readiness Check in your Math Unit

  1. From the Math Unit page, click Assign Math Unit in the top right corner.
  2. If you teach multiple sections, you can specify the section you’d like to assign in the upper right corner of the Assign screen.
  3. Select the start date and due date for the unit and assign the end-of-unit assessment(s) to students.
  4. Click Next.
  5. Select Readiness Check and the student(s) you want to assign it to.

  6. Click Done.

How can I view what students see when taking a Readiness Check?

  1. On the Math Unit page, click Readiness Check.
  2. Select Preview to see what students see.



Where can I find the Teacher's Guide?

For each question in the Readiness Check, the Teacher's Guide provides an answer key, a question narrative, aligned standards, a description of where students will need these skills in later lessons, and guidance on how to support students who need more help or who demonstrate understanding of each item.

On the Readiness Tab in the Overview page, navigate to the Teacher Resources section and click into the Teacher’s Guide.


How do students complete the Readiness Check?

  1. On the Math Unit Overview page, students click Start to begin the Readiness Check.

  2. Students answer a few questions about the topics covered in the upcoming math unit. This should take them less than 15 minutes, but there is no time limit.

  3. Once students finish their Readiness Check, they can review their answers by clicking Review my answers to see which questions they got right, and which they didn’t.

  4. Once they click Review my answers, they can view their responses to each question and the correct answers.


Looking at Readiness Check results

  1. From the course page, click on the Math Unit.
  2. From the Feedback tab, click the Readiness Check tab.
  3. On the Progress tab, you can view the status of students’ Readiness Checks to see who has completed it.
    • "Scored" status means the student has submitted the Readiness Check and "Working" means the student has not yet submitted the Readiness Check

  4. On the Results tab, you can view the raw results of students’ responses.

  5. On the Insights tab, you can view insights on how students answered the questions, along with ways you might adjust your lesson plan based on their topic knowledge.

  6. You can see students’ results arranged by the topics covered in the unit, and the question(s) related to it. The color-coded bar shows how students have answered each question.
    • The green bar shows the percentage of students who answered the question correctly.
    • The red bar shows the percentage of students who answered the question incorrectly.
    • The orange bar shows the percentage of students who answered the question partially correctly.
    • The gray bar shows the percentage of students who have not yet answered the question.

  7. Click View responses for the question if you want to look at individual student’s results.



Adjusting lesson plans based on student results

  1. Go to the Feedback tab, and click into Insights.

  2. Click Turn on reminder beside the actions you’d like to use in your lesson plan.


Once 70% of students have completed the Readiness Check, Recommended tags are shown beside the actions that may be most impactful for your class.

3. This will add a reminder to the corresponding day in the unit’s Plans tab reminding you of the change you want to make. The reminder only appears on your plans, even if other teachers are teaching this section.


4. To view reminders by section, click the Section list and select the section you wish to see reminders for. 



Which Math Units have Readiness Checks?

Readiness Checks are available in all IM Math courses for grade levels 4 - 11, in all Math Units. 

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