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Working with Mastery Tests


Mastery tests are used to quiz Learners knowledge of the material covered in the tutorial and application/practice for a module. There is no option to save and exit a mastery test to complete at a later time and need to be taken in one session. Mastery tests give mastery status if the score is 80% or higher, but not all tests report a score. See the link below for more information on why some activities do not report scores:

Why do some activities not report scores?

The best way to obtain an understanding of how a mastery test question answer was derived is to review the associated tutorial for that test. Content covered in mastery tests is covered in the tutorials. They detail how to work through the problems to come up with the answers. It is for this reason primarily that Learners are encouraged to work through the tutorials before going through the mastery tests, especially if they are unfamiliar or need clarification with the content.


A mastery test may lock for the following reasons:

  • Mastery criteria of 80% or higher was achieved. The mastery test will show as Completed, mastered, and a lock will appear next to the test. A score may display as well for some content.



  • Mastery criteria was not achieved. The mastery test will show as In Progress and a lock will appear next to the test.

not mastered.JPG

  • A connectivity issue results in the mastery test closing abruptly. The mastery test will show as In Progress and a lock will appear next to the test.


A mastery test is locked until:

  • The Learner completes the tutorial in that module, or
  • The Learner retakes the tutorial if the Learner had previously completed it, or
  • An educator unlocks the test for the Learner using the Edit Status feature


Number of Tries limit

For any class, you can limit the number of times the Learner can unlock a locked mastery test by reviewing the tutorial. After that, the Learner will require an educator to unlock it using the Edit Status feature. This limit applies to each mastery test in the assignment and to all Learners in the assignment.

What's Next

If a Learner takes a mastery test multiple times, the system keeps the highest score. Learners can only view the highest score, although educators can view all scores and history for multiple mastery test attempts.


If, the Learner gets a score that was lower than that on a prior attempt, dashes are displayed instead of the score. In the Activity History Log below, the Learner has taken the mastery test three times, earning scores of 20, 60, and 40%. The initial score of 20% is shown, as is the improved score of 60%, but not the 40%, which did not raise the Learner's test score.

Edit mastery test status

See the link below for more information on editing mastery test status:

Editing Learner status in PLATO content

Other Considerations

Is there a way to change the 80% percent mastery criteria?

In PLATO content, the system defined mastery criteria for mastery tests is 80% and cannot be changed. This also applies to activities in some elementary content titles (Math Expeditions, Beginning Reading, Reading Explorations), each of which function as a combined tutorial, drill and mastery test. Some content titles use dynamic mastery tests that give enough questions to determine whether the test is mastered, but do not report a score; they nevertheless use the 80% criteria to determine mastery.

Although the system doesn't automatically recognize anything less than 80% as mastered, you can work around this by manually editing the status of the activity to show mastered and change the score to whatever you want. Refer to Editing Learner status in PLATO content for details.

Is there a way to change the number of questions in a mastery tests?

You cannot customize a mastery test or change the number of questions presented in the mastery test in a PLATO course or title module. A mastery test draws a fixed number of questions randomly from a pool of questions.

Are there written answer keys available?

Written answer keys are not available for exploration activities. Educators can preview PLATO content including mastery tests, however, the ability to view answers in mastery tests varies by PLATO content title.

Can a learner master a module mastery test in just a minute or two?

Some module mastery tests typically require 80% correct of a total of 5 to 10 questions to master, so it is not uncommon for a student to master a mastery test in a short time, for example 1 to 5 minutes. Other mastery tests may typically take longer if they give a fixed number of questions, for example, 20 or 40 questions.

Can you view students answers of a Mastery Test?

Student answers are available for some Mastery Tests.


How to get more help

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