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TestTalker™ Frequently Asked Questions

We have developed a list of Frequently Asked Questions about TestTalker for our customers. For more specific questions, please email us: wynn at freedomscientific.com.

Click on a question to go to the complete text:

TestTalker Overview

TestTalker 1.3

Educational and Productivity Features

Document and File Support

Technical and General Questions

TestTalker Overview

  • What is TestTalker?
    TestTalker is a software solution to help individuals be more successful with test taking, worksheet completion, and with study materials. It can also help people complete forms electronically.

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  • How does TestTalker work?
    TestTalker provides a computer version of a test, worksheet, or other form that can talk. The material looks exactly like the paper rendition of the material, but provides a bimodal approach to the materials: words are spoken by a speech synthesizer while they are simultaneously highlighted. There are two versions of TestTalker: Teacher Edition and Student Edition. Both are required to support the test-taking process. Using Teacher Edition, a teacher scans in the material and configures the electronic answer blanks. The student takes the test electronically using the Student Edition.

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TestTalker 1.3

  • What’s new in TestTalker 1.3?
    TestTalker 1.3 now includes the high-quality, human-sounding AT&T speech synthesizer. TestTalker 1.3 ships with the 16-mHz Crystal voice. Users still have the option of using ViaVoice Outloud™, IBM’s precise-sounding speech synthesizer, which has been updated to version 6.4.

Educational and Productivity Features

  • Does TestTalker modify the test?
    No. Modifications change the test. TestTalker does not change the written test. TestTalker is an accommodation that provides a bimodal presentation of the unmodified written information. It does add electronic representations of the answer blanks so the students can electronically complete the test. But as it does not alter the test, it is an accommodation, not a modification.

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  • If I can't use TestTalker on standardized tests, how would I use it?
    TestTalker is valuable in helping students become better prepared for test-taking. TestTalker enables students to become familiar with specific testing formats. It provides a bimodal approach, which enhances learning for many students and helps empower students to feel successful. TestTalker also better prepares students for taking tests on the computer. Considering the increasing popularity of this method of test delivery, it serves as a tool for individuals to practice completing tests by computer.

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  • Can TestTalker be used to complete other types of forms, such as driver's license tests and application forms?
    Yes. TestTalker uses advanced, reliable, form-filling features, so it can easily be used to complete forms that have been configured using TestTalker Teacher Edition.

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  • What makes TestTalker Unique?
    Talking forms completion program, teacher definable answer fields; "clickable" electronic answer controls; eliminated potential of students typing over text from original test; conforms to requirements to not modify test, but simply provide accommodation.

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  • Does TestTalker Teacher Edition automatically insert answer blanks?
    Yes. TestTalker automatically detects underlines on a page and inserts fill-in answer blanks. Additional fill-in answer blanks, multiple choice buttons, and true false buttons may be added manually, if needed
    .

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  • How does TestTalker compare to scan-and-read programs that currently claim test completion capabilities?
    TestTalker has three important differences from other scan-and-read programs: (1) Other scan-and-read programs do not support Multiple Choice and True/False questions. TestTalker is the only scanning and reading program that supports this type of question. (2) Most other scan-and-read programs do not allow the teacher to resize fill-in blanks or add his/her own answer blanks. TestTalker allows the teacher to add, delete, move, and resize all answer types, including fill-in blanks. (3) Some programs use fill-in blanks that do not have size limits. This permits the student to actually type over existing text on the test! TestTalker's answer blanks have teacher-selectable size limits, thus ensuring that students will not overwrite other areas of the test.

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  • With other programs, the teacher does not need to do anything to set up the answer blanks on the test. It's just available at any time, automatically. Does TestTalker do this?
    Yes. TestTalker automatically detects underlines on a page and inserts fill-in answer blanks. This will save teachers precious time. Of course, with TestTalker, the teacher can also add other answer blanks whenever needed.

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Document and File Support

  • What type of questions does TestTalker support?
    TestTalker supports many types of questions: True/False, Multiple Choice, Fill-in, and Extended Answer. To support True/False tests and Multiple Choice tests, TestTalker provides answer bubbles for the student to select with the mouse, similar to answer bubbles students select on print tests using a pencil. To support Fill-in and Extended Answer tests, TestTalker provides single-line and multi-line answer blanks for the student to type their answers into. These answer controls are inserted when configuring the test in the Teacher Edition so that they are available when taking the test in the student Edition.

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  • Does TestTalker support PDF files?
    Yes. TestTalker includes a PDF (Adobe® Portable Document Format) converter. You simply open the PDF file in TestTalker Teacher Edition, and it becomes available just as though you had scanned it in.

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  • Does TestTalker support files a teacher has created in Microsoft Word?
    Yes. A teacher can open a Microsoft Word file in TestTalker Teacher Edition. TestTalker will automatically recognize and insert fill-in blanks. The teacher can add other answer blanks and answer buttons, just as though the document had been printed and scanned in. This provides a time-saving alternative to scanning documents into TestTalker.

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  • Can TestTalker be used with Standardized or ScanTron tests?
    There is no reason TestTalker could not be used on text-based, standardized tests. That being said, each state and district has specific rules and regulations in regards to their standardized testing. Many students who have I.E.P.s are entitled to specific accommodations. TestTalker could support these accommodations. However, you will need to check the regulations in your area. Currently TestTalker does not support ScanTron tests.

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  • Can I change the reading order in a document after I've scanned it?
    Yes, you can change the reading order on any TestTalker file using our new Dynamic Zoning feature. This allows you to define your own zones (reading areas) on the page, in the unusual case where TestTalker doesn't recognize the reading order correctly the first time. Using Dynamic Zoning, you can define any area you want TestTalker to read, in the order you want it spoken. You can also have TestTalker ignore text and graphics that you don't want it to try to read.

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  • · What document formats can TestTalker read?
    Using TestTalker's Virtual Printer, you can send a document from any file format into TestTalker Teacher Edition. Just issue a print command, then choose "TestTalker Virtual Printer" from the list of printer drivers. The document will show up in TestTalker Teacher Edition ready to be configured.

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Technical and General Questions

  • Why didn't you add these capabilities to WYNN, your other product? Why have a separate product?
    WYNN and TestTalker have different purposes. WYNN is a software tool to help people read, write, and study more effectively. WYNN is a powerful program with many features to help struggling readers and writers, such as word prediction, dictionary, and spell checking.
     

    TestTalker is a software tool to help people prepare for and take tests and worksheets, and fill out forms. Many of WYNN's features are not permitted in a testing environment. By creating a separate product, we are able to keep the price lower.

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  • I like these new features. Will we be seeing them in WYNN soon?
    Some of TestTalker's features have been added to WYNN 3.5, such as Dynamic Zoning and Document Clean-up. However, just because a feature appears in one product, that doesn't necessarily mean we will add it to the other. We will only add a feature if its implementation is consistent with the needs of the users of that product.

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  • What are the technical requirements?
    To run TestTalker, your computer must meet the following minimum requirements:
    • An IBM-compatible Pentium or higher computer running at least 450 MHz
    • Windows 95/98/Me, Windows NT, Windows 2000, or Windows XP
    • 92 MB of RAM
    • A CD-ROM drive
    • A compatible sound card with speaker
    • (for Teacher Edition) A supported TWAIN-compatible scanner
    • A video card and monitor capable of VGA video in 800x600, high-color 16-bit color mode or greater

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  • How much does TestTalker cost?
    TestTalker: Teacher Edition retails for $399.00.
    TestTalker: Student Edition comes in a 5-pack, which costs $249.00.
    Multiple unit pricing is available.

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For more information, call 1-800-444-4443 or e-mail wynn at freedomscientific.com.

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