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ACT WorkKeys updates: Preparation & Demos

Prepare for the WorkKeys Assessments & NCRC updates ... See full description
Prepare for the WorkKeys Assessments & NCRC updates with demonstrations of the new platform, a review of the transition timeline and overview of the curriculum changes.
Recorded on April 18
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Important Information
  • Online testing for Applied Math, Graphic Literacy, and Workplace Documents will be available June 1
    • The three new tests will be available for registration and administration online once customers have completed an updated Standard Agreement
  • Paper and Accommodated testing materials for the new tests will be available to order starting August 1
  • New ACT WorkKeys NCRC can be earned by examinees taking the three new tests starting June 1
  • PDFs can be generated in RegiSTAR for the new certificates as they are earned starting June 1
  • PDFs for all certificates can be generated for free by examinees in MyWorkKeys starting June 1
  • Spanish versions of Applied Math, Graphic Literacy, and Workplace Documents will be available starting September 1
  • Online Curriculum for Applied Math, Graphic Literacy, and Workplace Documents will be available starting September 1
  • Listening for Information and Performance will no longer be available for online testing starting June 1
  • Listening and Writing and Teamwork paper tests will no longer be scored by ACT (either batch or Express Score) starting June 1




What does ACT recommend profiling clients do after select assessments are retired in June 2018?
ACT advises clients to review their job profile/content validation report as soon as possible. It is fairly typical for clients to profile more skills than they plan to test on. If this is the case, a review of the report may suggest an additional assessment that could be used once a sunsetting assessment is no longer available. A review of the report will also indicate when the profile was done. If the profile was done some time ago and/or the job has changed, ACT suggests the client strongly consider updating the profile. In either event, your local job profiler will be able to provide assistance.
Will there be replacements for the assessments being sunset?
ACT is not planning any replacement or alternative assessments for the assessments being sunset. In the future, all new assessments are anticipated. Areas of exploration include 21st century skills like Information and Communication Technology and Collaborative Problem Solving. We will continue to maintain close communication with you, our partners, through all changes.
What is the timeline for these updates?
There will be a transition period from the current version of WorkKeys assessments, credential and curriculum to the new updates. The key dates are:

June 2017:

Jun 1: Standard CBT of updated WorkKeys Assessments available
Jun 1: Updated WorkKeys test prep packages available online
Jun 30: Last day to receive paper test materials (legacy)

July 2017:

Jul 21: Last day to order current (legacy) assessment paper or accommodated materials

August 2017:

Aug 1: Standard paper forms of updated WorkKeys Assessments available
Aug 1: Updated accommodated WorkKeys Assessment forms available
Aug 18: Last day for batch scoring of paper tests (legacy) (All answer documents must be postmarked by this date for ACT to score and report.

September 2017:

Sep 1: Spanish WorkKeys Assessment forms available

October 2017

Oct 1: Current versions of WorkKeys components no longer available
Oct 1: New ACT WorkKeys Local Scan software will be available
Should my profiling clients continue to use the assessments that will be retired in June 2018?
Yes. The assessments will be available until June 2018 so your clients can continue to use the assessments until that time. If you are using paper-and-pencil tests, dates will be made available for the last date to order and the last date to submit for processing when we get closer to June.
Are the new/updated tests that will make up the updated ACT WorkKeys NCRC similar enough to the old tests that the skills will not need to be re-profiled?
If a company is using the assessments in their personnel practices (such as a requirement in the hiring process):
  • Graphic Literacy is a new test and will need to be profiled in order for a company to use it in the hiring process.
  • Applied Math – There are some changes at Levels 5, 6, and 7. Staff are currently evaluating whether these changes are big enough to require re-profiling and more information will be provided.
  • Reading for Information – We anticipate significant similarities between the two tests and we do not anticipate the skill needing to be re-profiled.
What are the impacts of these WorkKeys changes to job profilers and job profile-related products and services?
Several steps will be taken to ease the transition for ACT-authorized job profilers and the customers of job profile-related services:
  • The ACT job profiler tool kits will be updated to reflect the new assessment constructs
  • ACT-authorized job profilers will be trained on the new skill constructs at no additional cost to the profiler
  • Services provided by our own job profiler team will likewise be aligned to the new constructs
  • To every extent possible, profiles currently in the job profile database will be cross walked to the new assessments prior to the launch of those assessments
  • If ACT-authorized job profilers need to re-profile a job there will be a convenient way for them to add this data to the ACT job profile database
What will companies need to do to use the new Graphic Literacy assessment, or add Reading for Information and Applied Math to a profile if they were not included in the original profile?
Profiling of the new Graphic Literacy could take 30 minutes to an hour depending on the job and how current the profile so it isn’t anything like completing a profile from scratch. Additional information will be provided in the coming months.

Profile overview:

Step 1. Find the profile report and verify that it followed the content validity format. If the report cannot be found or does not follow the content validity format, ACT recommends that the entire profile be redone because there is no supporting documentation. A report that follows the content validity format will include an executive summary, nine sections, four appendices and the Final Task List.

Step 2. Review the profile report to determine if it is still representative of the job. When an organization wants to determine if an established job profile is still valid and usable for selection purposes, the first question that must be addressed is whether or not the job, equipment, operating procedures, or applicable training programs have changed. The profiler should have multiple subject matter experts review the Final Task List and highlight any tasks that have changed since the original profile was conducted. The original report and this documentation should then be submitted to the ACT Industrial/Organizational Psychology Department for review and a final decision on whether a full profile must be completed or if a skill can be added to the existing profile.

Step 3. If a skill can be added to an existing profile, the local job profiler can conduct the profiling work needed to add the new skill to the existing profile.

Step 4. Job profiler will review Final Task List with SMEs, makes minor adjustments and perform a skill analysis for the skill being added to the profile.

Step 5. Profiler will either customize the Content Validity Report Addendum for the additional skill profiled using the template provided by ACT or complete a new report depending on the extent of the changes.
What about all of our customers who currently have NCRC’s? When the new NCRC is launched & if/when an employer re-profiles, will they be required to test again? Who pays for that?
We don’t anticipate it being a problem for AM or RFI because the changes aren’t going to effect the levels. Graphic Literacy is a new assessment so they would need to take it if the employer is using the results for high stakes decisions.
What kind of technical data and validity evidence will be available at launch of the updated products in June 2017?
As part of its test development process, ACT’s research team will conduct multiple research studies to ensure the quality and validity of the updated assessments and credential. These include:
  • Timing study – Results will be used to determine the appropriate amount of time that candidates have to complete each assessment.
  • Cognitive Lab Study
  • Scaling Study – Results will be used to develop initial scale scores and to conduct analysis to detect subgroup (gender, race/ethnicity) differences in testing.
  • Cut Score Study
  • Linking Study – Results will be used to develop a concordance table to link the old and the new versions of the assessments.
  • Mode Study – Study will evaluate any potential differences between examinee scores for online vs. paper and pencil assessments.
  • Fairness Study – Study will evaluate any potential subgroup (gender, race/ethnicity) differences in examinee scores on the assessments.
Results from these studies will be included in new WorkKeys Technical Manuals that will be released for each updated assessment as part o the June 2017 launch. Technical manuals will be available online at no cost to customers.
Will there be replacements for the assessments being sunset?
ACT is not planning any replacement or alternative assessments for the assessments being sunset. In the future, all new assessments are anticipated. Areas of exploration include 21st century skills like Information and Communication Technology and Collaborative Problem Solving. We will continue to maintain close communication with you, our partners, through all changes.
Will ACT be offering any discounted/free profiler training to help offset employer cost to have positions re-profiled for 2.0 assessments?
All current ACT-Authorized will be offered free webinars to ease the transition to the updated assessments. This is ACT’s standard practice with any new or updated assessments.
What is the final date to use the current WorkKeys NCRC assessments (Reading for Information, Locating Information, & Applied Mathematics)?
All customers have through October 1, 2017 to use the current WorkKeys NCRC assessments. Please note that in order to obtain a WorkKeys NCRC credential all three assessments need to be taken. If someone has completed one or more of the current assessments, the other assessment(s) must be the same version. Both the current and updated versions of the WorkKeys NCRC Assessments will be available online between June 1 and October 1. All orders for paper versions of the current WorkKeys NCRC assessments must be placed by June 30, 2017 and ACT will accept current paper versions for scoring through August 18, 2017 (postmarked).
When will the new SkillPro be released?
The new SkillPro was released May 12th, 2017
What assessments are being sunset (discontinued) in June 2018?
The following assessments will be discontinued June 1, 2018:
  • Applied Technology
  • Business Writing
  • Observation
  • Workplace Observation
Deadline Extension: The deadline for all US customers to transition to the new ACT WorkKeys NCRC assessments has been extended beyond Oct 1. Click here to update your agreement.

Are you an international customer? Your products will not change. Please contact Customer Care with questions at 800-967-5539 or [email protected].

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