Exam scanning services drop-off location is at Media Production Services located in the Temporary Lecture Theatre (T34)
Clients will be contacted when scanning has been completed and packages are ready for pick up from Media Production Services. For inquiries and updates regarding submitted OMR packages, please call MPS at x24446.
OMR Services is a high speed information processing system that grades and records the results of multiple choice tests and questionnaires. This is achieved through a scanner reading pre-recorded answers on specially designed answer sheets with special software interpreting the data taken from the scanner.
Please note we cannot use the older seven-digit student ID Scantron sheets. Returns or exchanges are not possible.
Results are returned on a Blank CD or can be sent via the MacDrive. Blank CDs are available through customer service for $2 CASH ONLY.
If you are not on MacDrive and want to receive results this way, please go to: https://macdrivehelp.mcmaster.ca/gettingstarted/
For further information please contact 24446.
The scanning software does have a few limitations that you need to be aware of:
- If a respondent does not clearly erase an answer before changing it, the scanner may read this as a multiple answer and report an error. This can be avoided by educating students on how to fill in their answers, stressing to students to clearly and fully erase answers when changing them.
- The scanner only reads HB lead pencil marks. Pen, marker and nonHB lead are not readable. The scanner will produce an error message when processing sheets filled with these kinds of marks. This can be avoided by ensuring that students use HB pencils when filling out their response sheets.
- There is a limit of five possible choices to a single question. The response sheets for tests have five possible options per question.
- The software is capable of processing only one response per question on the answer key. The weighted file may be used to give credit for a second answer also deemed to be correct or to give part marks for answers other than the correct answer.
- Only one answer is allowed per question on the Scantron sheet.
- A Scantron Answer Sheet only allows for 100 questions (50 per side). If you have a exam with more than 100 questions, then you must treat the exam like 2 separate exams, 1-100 and then 1- however many more (If you have 120 questions, then 1-100 with an answer key, and then in another pile 1-20) This is the only way to process more than 100 questions – they must be separate.
The process of replacing the hardware and software that is used to scan examination sheets has made it possible to look for ways to enhance the service for customers.
The following enhancements have been incorporated into the system:
- Multiple versions with amalgamated results
- Zero out questions, including in multiple versions
- Exception or difference reporting, identifying:
- Student IDs in the Registrar’s class list for whom there is NO MARK
- Student IDs NOT in the Registrar’s class list for whom there is a mark
- Duplicate student IDs (with sequence number in original scan)
- For multiple versions, student IDs where version could not be determined
- Reports in printer independent format returned on CD only. Result reports will not be printed but files will be copied onto CD’s provided by the faculty.
- Scores in spread sheet ready file format, also WebCT and Gradebook specific data files
- Weighted questions and answers, based on customer supplied file
Steps to Follow
When submitting tests for scanning:
- Completely fill out the Request form. A sample request form and answer sheets with instructions can be found here.
- Prepare the student response sheets: right side up, timing marks on the same side, no extra paper or post-it notes, no paper clips or staples. When using multiple versions, make sure the version number is coded on each student’s sheet.
- Prepare the paper answer key(s) and label them clearly. If using a weighted file, indicate the file name on the Request Form.
- Submit your test to Media Production Services (Temporary Lecture Theatre – T34).
- Turnaround times for tests fluctuate depending on the time of year and can be up to 48 hours during exams. Please check with the Customer Service for current turnaround times.
By default the system gives a student one mark for each right answer and all other answers are considered incorrect with a mark of zero. A paper answer key is typically used for this marking scheme. However, the OMR exam system allows for instructors to weight questions, answers or both using a “weighted file”. If the test has weighted questions or answers then a weighted file must be supplied instead of a paper answer key for the test to be processed correctly.
Submit the Weighted Questions/Answers as follows: Course name – Course Code – Prof Last Name – Date (Bio1AA3JessomeApr2020)
Sample Data Files
- Raw Data (e.g. 17FEB2004SCAN1A06.dlm) – tab-delimited, no answer key(s)
Format: ID, version (for multiple versions ONLY), answers (* for multiple responses, no character for no response)
For a single version exam, this format is compatible with the raw data format supplied with the previous OMR exam system.
- Raw Data with Answer Keys (e.g. ExamRawData.csv) – comma-separated, answer key(s)
Format: one line identifying course, blank line, answer key(s) in version order, blank line, student responses (ID, version (always shown), answers (* for multiple responses, – for no response)