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Office of Teaching Evaluation and Assessment Research

Office of Teaching Evaluation and Assessment Research

116 College Avenue
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
Phone: (848) 932-7466
Fax: (732) 932-1845

Datalink 3000 Scanner Instructions


Note: The scanner will no longer be available for use in the OTEAR office after August 31, 2015.

Test Scoring

  1. Launch "DataLink Connect".
  2. The default scanning mode in DataLink is "Test Scoring". The alternate "Data Collection Mode" is only useful for anonymous surveys. Click on the "Test Scoring" icon (answer sheet with check mark) to verify you are in Test Scoring Mode.
  3. Optionally load your roster into the student database (see below). If you skip this step, your spreadsheet and printed reports will only have RUID numbers.
  4. Insert an answer key for your test with the "key" bubble marked into the paper tray. The key must be face up with the top edge of the page towards the scanner.
    1. If your test has multiple versions and you are using test form #20420, you may load multiple keys at the same time; use the "test version" bubble marks to identify each individual test key. Students will need to bubble in the matching "test version" on their answer sheets.
    2. If your test has multiple versions and you are using test form #29240, you must manually sort the student answer sheets into separate piles for each version, and scan each pile separately. You will be able to combine the student scores in Excel afterwards.
  5. Click on the "Scan" icon in the DataLink software to scan the key.
  6. The keyed questions will be displayed in the DataLink scanner results window. The scanner will print the correct answer directly on the answer key sheet, in red ink. If you need to adjust the question weights or scoring, you should do that now (see below).
  7. Place the stack of completed answer sheets in the input tray in the same orientation the key was placed. Click the "Scan" icon to score the answer sheets. The scanner will mark the incorrect answers in red ink, directly on the answer sheet.
  8. Students' answers will appear as a spreadsheet and the program will provide percent scores, as well as ID number.
  9. Incorrect answers are highlighted. When the scanner has trouble reading the student marks due to poor erasure, the answer will be marked "incorrect" and both letters will appear in the spreadsheet.
  10. You can edit the answer key or the student responses in the DataLink software. Rescoring is automatic.
  11. Click "File --> Save..." and save the datalink data file to a flash drive.
  12. If you have more than one version of the test to scan, you may want to finish printing and exporting before moving on to the next test. Close the file (make sure you save first) and restart DataLink, then start over.


Note: All files will be deleted when the computer is logged off or restarted.

You must save your files to a flash drive or email them to yourself.

General Advice:

To Load Your Roster into the Student Database (must be done prior to scanning)

  1. Using Excel, create a new copy of your roster that has the "RUID" as the first column (column "A"), the students' first names as the second column ("B"), and their last names as the 3rd column ("C"). Please refer to our instructions for preparing a file from the REGIS or Sakai rosters.
    1. Click the "File" menu, then "Save as..." (in some versions of Excel, this may be labeled "Export...")
    2. Choose "Comma Separated (CSV)" as the format, and finish saving the file (be careful not to overwrite your original roster file).
    3. Warning! Never open your ".csv" file in Excel - doing so will instantly remove leading zeros from RUID numbers and make them useless. If you need to make changes, go back the original ".xls" file, or open the ".csv" file in a text editor or word processor.
  2. In DataLink, click the "File" menu, then choose "Student Database".
    1. Click the "Import Students" button.
    2. Choose the ".csv" file that you created earlier.
    3. You should see the names of your students in the student database window. Click "OK", and proceed with scanning.
  3. The student database will be deleted whenever the OTEAR computer is logged out or restarted. Save your CSV file for future sessions, and load it into DataLink again before scanning.


To Weigh Questions

  1. Click the "Session" menu, then choose "Scoring"
  2. Near the top of the window, click the "Custom Scoring" link.
  3. Enter values in “Value Correct” Column
  4. If you need more intricate scoring options, you can click "Rubric Scoring", this allows you to assign different values to partially-correct answers (e.g., on question #5, "A" gets 5 points, "C" gets 2 points, etc.)


Multiple Answers

  1. Fill in more than one answer on the answer key sheet, and scan the answer key.
  2. Click the "Session" menu, then choose "Scoring"
  3. Near the top of the window, click the "Custom Scoring" link.
  4. In the "multiple" column, choose the appropriate option, "All" (student must mark all answers together), "Either/Or" (student must give only one answer), or "Both" (student may answer either choice alone or both together).


After you have completed scanning your answer sheets, the DataLink reports can be printed or results can be exported into Microsoft Excel format. The data can be exported in a variety of formats compatible with many gradebook applications, including the Sakai gradebook.

  1. Click the "Excel Export" icon, and choose "Full Report".
  2. Type a name, including the ".xlsx", and choose where to save the file. We recommend saving to a flash drive.
  3. To export for gradebook software (including Sakai gradebook), click the "Gradebook Export" button.
  4. Choose the format appropriate for your needs. The best option for use with Sakai is the "Sakai Gradebook2" format, which includes columns for the score, raw number of correct answers, and percentage correct. Refer to our page for importing scanner data into Sakai for more information.
  5. Type a name, including a ".csv", and choose where to save. Important! To use the file in Sakai, you must change the filename from ".txt" to ".csv"!
  6. If you want to export again using a different format, click the "Datalink" menu, choose "Preferences" and click the "Gradebook" icon. You can then choose from the many formats that Datalink supports.

Use the Datalink Connect software anywhere

You may install the Datalink software on any computer. This allows you to scan in our office, but do the rest of your work at the location of your choice.

  1. Download the software on your home or office computer:
  2. Install the software.
  3. Double click the data files from your scanning session, and they will open in the Datalink software.



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