About SAM

"SAM engages so much more because our students learn in the type of interactive,
immediate environment they’ve grown up with.”

– Cindy Herbert, instructor, Metropolitan Community College – Longview

Reduce your workload and improve learning outcomes

SAM reduces instructors’ workloads with efficient course management tools and auto-graded assignments and exams. SAM improves student learning outcomes through self-paced learning and personalized remediation.

What is SAM? SAM stands for Skills Assessment Manager, an interactive online learning environment that helps students master Microsoft Office skills and computer concepts that are essential to academic and career success. SAM engages students in self-paced learning of Microsoft Office applications – including Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint, Windows, Internet Explorer, and Outlook, as well as technology concepts and issues; and reduces instructors’ workloads with auto-graded assignments and exams, and easy-to-use course setup and management tools.

Through a simulated Microsoft Office environment, computer novices and experienced users are able to practice Microsoft Office tasks at the skill level that is most appropriate for them – from an observation mode that allows students to watch the task being completed before tackling it on their own, to an apply mode that allows students to complete the task without guidance and receive feedback.

With SAM Projects, students apply their skills to creating real-world projects, such as flyers, budgets, and presentations. These projects are automatically graded, allowing students to go back and fix errors, and saving instructors the time of hand-grading.

SAM also includes exams that assess students on their ability to complete tasks in the simulated Microsoft Office environment. A student study guide report provides personalized remediation, linking students back to simulated practice of skills they have not yet mastered and to the related section of the e-book for additional information.

The SAM System

SAM Assessment — evaluate proficiency with questions from Cengage Learning texts to address how students will use Microsoft Office beyond the classroom.

SAM Training — encourage learning via reading, watching, or receiving guided help. Four elements – Intro, Observe, Practice and Apply – provide self-paced practice and support as students work step-by-step towards mastering key skills.

SAM Projects — is a cheat-proof project tool that has learners use Word, Excel, Access, or PowerPoint to communicate, solve a problem, or make a decision. They receive detailed feedback, while you save the time of hand-grading projects.

Computer Concepts Labs — on topics including computer hardware, safety and security, computer networks, and more bring concepts to life through interactive simulations, hands-on trainings and auto-graded assessments.

Benefits of the SAM System

Unlike other assessment environments, SAM...
  • works in multiple browsers including Internet Explorer, Firefox and Safari;
  • requires no special reader and no installation other than Flash; and
  • comes with CourseCare training and implementation support.