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FAQS ▼

Please read this FAQ page carefully before contacting the Co-op.
 
 General PLATO FAQs

The following FAQs are for general use of the PLATO software. For specific course related FAQs, please see PLATO Science FAQs, or PLATO Math FAQs below.

What are the computer system requirements for these programs?

PLATO Learning has also developed a new tool that can check your computer for compatibility. Please visit Plato System Requirements Checker and click on the PLE System Requirements file. Please be aware that the Sun JRE is typically NOT required and an older plug in. If your computer does not pass that in the checker, please skip it and consider it a non-issue for what we offer.

For "How to turn off pop-up blockers to run Plato activities": click here.

For a list of all current requirements, including supported browsers, click here

What is included in the Plato Courses?

Each course is divided into units and then further sub-divided into modules. Modules can be online lessons/activities or offline printables. For course descriptions that shows how many are online lessons ( called exemptible modules in this document) and offline activities, click here.

What is the pre-test?

Some Plato courses/content offer pre-tests. If applicable, once the student takes a pre-test, the program will mark sections as exempt if the student passes. Pre-tests are optional per student/parent decision. Even if the student is exempted, the material is still accessible if the parent deems practice necessary. The pre-test does not count against the student.

Is there a guide for any of these courses?

Yes, many of these courses do have a guide! Here are instructions for accessing the instructor resources: click here

How is the Plato Co-op member's subscription different from what a student in a school setting has access to?

Our set-up is a bit different than the typical school student set up. Since this is a student subscription only (we give you a link to the instructor resource materials but you do not have a teacher subscription) your student will not have access to any offline teacher grading. If the Plato system doesn't grade it automatically, then you as the parent will be the grader. The instructor resource materials provide either an answer key, rubric to guide you or as the teacher you will use your own judgment. In addition, there are no online discussions. Since this is for homeschoolers, discussions will need to happen in the home between the student and parent. Similarly, our students do not have access to the Drop Box or message feature since there is not a teacher on the other end to respond.

In a typical school setting, a district purchases Plato curriculum and has teachers assigned to implement it. The Co-op is providing the material to homeschoolers but there isn't a certified, paid teacher assigned to facilitate that account. We are more than happy to assist with technical issues but there are not teachers for each account. Anything graded automatically by the Plato system will be found in the student progress report. Any offline grading will need to be kept track of offline by the parent. The steps for locating this student progress report are found in our FAQ.

Are all the titles interactive with a lot of videos like the middle school science courses?

Math tends to have more video "instruction". But while there is some interactive and multimedia, most of the titles also have more reading like a textbook. They will not look like the middle school life, earth & space or physical science titles.

Is there an option to renew my current PLATO subscription?

Due to programming issues, we do not have PLATO renewals. Here is a simple fix we suggest:

1. Save the progress report in your current PLATO course to your hard drive before your subscription expires.

2. Purchase a new subscription to the same course.

3. Using the progress report from the previous subscription, your student may pick up where they left off. You may combine a progress report from both subscriptions to have a complete picture of your student's work online with PLATO.

Does the program track a student?

Yes, the system does track and record one student's progress. Plato recommends you download and save a progress report at least once a week.

How do I access the student progress reports?

Log into your PLATO student account. In either the Active Word or All My Work Section, click on the Create Progress report in a class. Or if you click on All My Work, this will bring up everything for that class and in the upper right is a button that says: View Progress Report. Clicking on this link will bring up a pdf that may be saved and/or printed off for your records.

How are things graded?

There are online applications and mastery tests that are graded by the system. However there are some printable activities that parents need to grade and the answer keys are available in their instructor resources account. Any discussion or essay-type questions will need to be done between the student and parent. Please check the instructor resources for a rubric or suggestions.

What does the e mean in the exemption column?

*IF applicable*, the E means that your student did well enough in the pretest to exempt a section(s). You may choose to skip the section or work through the content. Some parents choose to have their student do everything regardless of the pre-test results. Additionally, some courses do not have pre/post tests, but instead of auto-mastery and auto-grading within the content.

The Plato subscription is in the name of the Co-op member, not the student. Why is that?

Due to programming issues, the subscription must be in the name of the Co-op member under which the subscription was purchased.

May more than one student use one subscription?

No. PLATO courses are designed for use by a single student. The system does not differentiate between two different students taking the same course unless two separate subscriptions are purchased. If you have two students who need to take Biology, for example, you should purchase two Biology courses. If you attempt to have multiple students share the same subscription, we will be unable to provide technical support for the problems this creates.

Is the PLATO website available at all times?

Typically, yes. However they state say that they do site maintenance and updates on Saturdays. After talking with them, they said it is not every Saturday that it is unavailable. Likely not more than a couple times a month and typically only once a month that members will not be able to log in. Here is PLATO's official statement:

PLATO Learning periodically performs scheduled maintenance on the PLATO Learning Environment on Saturdays beginning at 8:00 p.m. Central Time through Sundays at 2:00 a.m. Central Time. PLE may be unavailable during this time.

I would like to purchase two subscriptions of the same item. How do I do this?

You are always welcome to order as many as you would like. However due to the programming set-up for each subscription, you will have to place two separate orders if you would like more than one of an item. In other words, you can never put any other number besides a 1 in the QTY box. Likewise, if you order a pack with more than one course, each course must be different. You may not choose two of the same courses in a package. We recognize this may cause some confusion and apologize but want to make sure you receive everything you purchase.

How do I log in to PLATO?

1. Log in to your Co-op account from our homepage, www.homeschoolbuyersco-op.org. Go to your subscription tab and your PLATO subscription links.
2. Click on student PLATO subscription link.

3. Click on the Log-in button that appears in the upper left a new window. You should now be in the PLATO system.

4. Click on the Assignments button, which is usually green, in the upper left. This page will list your course title links as well as progress reports for viewing and saving.

5. You should now be able to navigate through the course title.
6. Be SURE to click the Log Out link in the upper right at the end of your time slot.

How do I log out of PLATO?

At the top right of the screen you will see a log-out button. It is very important when your time slot is over that you log-out. We really appreciate your courtesy to other members in doing this.

My student didn't finish a mastery test but now it is locked. What should I do?

The system is assuming your student needs to review or re-do the lesson before retaking the test again. From a PLATO support article: If you enter too many incorrect answers when taking a mastery test, or if you are disconnected from the Internet while taking a test (or if you exit before finished), you will be locked out. This means you have not mastered the material and need to complete the tutorial associated with the test. Once you complete the tutorial or, having completed it, re-enter it, advance back and forth quickly through a few slides and exit, the mastery test will unlock and you can take it again.

In some rare instances, the mastery test will still not unlock after re-entering/re-doing the lesson. Please email the Co-op with the specifics and we will do it manually. Include the course title and test title so we know exactly what to unlock.

The application and practice tests are locked. How do I access them?

Completing the tutorial/lesson that corresponds with the application and practice tests will unlock these. First do the tutorial and then you may proceed to any additional activities/options for that section.

My student did a lesson but it is not marked as completed. What can I do?

Log into Plato as the student using the correct browser, which is Internet Explorer and Chrome for PC users. Open the lesson. At the bottom left of the lesson slide is a frog jumping icon. Click and scroll through and see what the Edmentum system doesn't currently have as checked and make sure those are fully completed. If the slide is fully completed, you will see a green check mark. If it not checked, click on that slide title and the program will take you to that specific slide. Listen and do everything. If a student clicks out of a slide before the audio and/or the activity is completed, the Edmentum system will not consider it done.

Again, this only works if you are in a supported browser which is IE and Chrome for PC users. Once the student has fully completed all unchecked slides, exit the lesson, refresh the page and see if the lesson is now marked as completed (solid green circle). In a few cases, the Edmentum system will not properly record a student's progress. If this happens, please let us know and we would be happy to manually mark it as completed. Please give course name, semester, unit and chapter title of the lesson.

The biggest issue we have found is that the student is not using the correctly supported browser in which case it is not unusual for the Edmentum system to not fully and accurately record progress.

Is it possible to change the grade required for mastery on the mastery tests? It is currently set to 80% and we would like it to be X% instead.

In PLATO content, the system defined mastery criteria for mastery tests is 80% and cannot be changed. However in the Instructor resource materials, there is often a unit test that you can print off and an answer key. If these are available, you may print these out and use your own percentage for mastery.

Can I print out the mastery tests and answers?

No, not the mastery tests that are taken and graded by the Plato system. However upon completion of a mastery test, there is a certificate that can be printed. You choose the student to be shown, it lists the chapter and unit title and the score earned.

The unit post test is locked. May I manually unlock as we can with the chapter mastery tests?

No. Since the unit post test is a cumulative review from all the chapters in that unit, once it is done, the test is locked, regardless of the score. Options:

1. In the instructor resource materials, there are usually printable unit tests with answer keys (see steps below to access the printable unit tests). You may have your student do the offline printable unit test in place of an online unit test or to help prepare for the online unit test. Any scores earned from an offline unit test would need to be recorded offline by the parent as well.

2. If there is a unit test in your student's course, we can reset a unit post-test however the student's score and progress will be cleared and they will have to start at the beginning of the unit test. We want to make sure you understand this before requesting that we reset a unit post-test.

How do I access the printable unit tests?

1. Click on your Plato instructor resource link in your Co-op account.
2. Top left Plato Courseware choose > Courseware - Home School Parents
3. Select Plato Content on the left.
4. Scroll to the correct course and expand to access materials.
5. Once the test is open, select view answer key and in the top right there is a Print button to print out the entire test and/or answer key.
- You can print post tests even though there may not be a post test shown within the student subscription. You may also print/view an answer key for the post tests.
- While you cannot print out a mastery test, you can preview it as an instructor by clicking View next to the mastery test.
- The post test will be hand-graded by you the parent so will not appear on the progress report. You may manually record the grade off-line.

Pop-up blockers are making it difficult for me to use my PLATO program. How can I troubleshoot and/or adjust my browser to allow the pop-ups?

How to turn off pop-up blockers to run PLATO activities: Turn off pop-up blockers.

What do I do if my question is not answered on this page?

You can submit your question at the Contact Us page. We will answer your question and update this page as well.

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