Chem 13 News Exam and Avogadro Exam frequently asked questions

Registration

1. I am a teacher interested in registering my students for either the Chem 13 News Exam or the Avogadro Exam. How do I register?

  • You must register separately for each exam through the University of Waterloo Online Shop from February to mid-April. Before registering, be sure to review our website for detailed information about these exams.
  • You register and pay for the exam at the same time. Therefore, you must already know how many students will be writing the exam when you register.
  • You are restricted to one order per school for the Chem 13 News Exam and one order per school for the Avogadro exam. 
  • The teacher who registers for an exam agrees to act as the Exam Administrator for their school. Information about the exam, including instructions for administering the exam, will be sent by email to the Exam Administrator using the email address given at the time of registering. The email will be from scialert@uwaterloo.ca. You should expect this email about a week before the exam date.

2. How do I receive an invoice in order to get reimbursed from my school for ordering the Avogadro and Chem 13 News exams?

  • Once credit card payment is received for your exam order, a confirmation of payment will be sent by email to the supervising teacher (exam administrator) who placed the order. Please retain this email as proof of payment, as this is your official receipt.  It shows how many exams you ordered, the cost per exam, and the total amount paid.
  • With the online payment system, we are no longer able to provide invoices or accept purchase orders.

3. When will I receive my login/password for the exam?

  • You will receive an email from scialert@uwaterloo.ca with a login/password for SciOn, the platform used by the Faculty of Science at the University of Waterloo for its annual science contests. Teachers are sent their login and student passwords approximately one week before the exam. However, students cannot log in until the day of the exam. We recommend not giving login and password information to students in advance. 
  • If you registered for both the Avogadro and Chem 13 News exams, you will receive a separate login/password for each exam oSciOn.  Make sure you are using the correct login/password for each exam.

4. Am I able to order additional exams?

  • If you need additional exams, you will have to go back online to the order form (make sure you are ordering the correct exam), and put a note in under the heading “Additional note” telling me to add the extra copy(ies) to your original order.
  • Note: the order form will no longer be available on our website after the deadline date.

5. Is there a minimum order required for the Chem 13 News Exam and Avogadro Exam?

  • No. Since everything is done online, teachers are able to order just one copy if they want to.

6. Are tutoring schools allowed to order exams?

  • No. All exams must be ordered by a teacher at an accredited high school.

7. Has the time difference for overseas schools been taken into consideration when making the tests available on-line? 

  • Yes. The exams should be written in one 75-minute period during regular hours (your local time).

8. I have some students who took grade 11 chemistry in first semester, and are currently taking grade 12 chemistry in second semester. They prefer to write the Avogadro Exam as they have completed that course. Can they write the Avogadro exam, or do they have to write the Chem 13 News Exam?

  • Grade 11 students who are currently taking grade 12 chemistry should write the Chem 13 News Exam, not the Avogadro exam. These students may write the Chem 13 News Exam again next year in their final year of high school.
  • Note: Teachers should not register a student for both exams. Students who are registered to write the Chem 13 News Exam are ineligible to write the Avogadro Exam.

9. I just noticed that I registered for, and ordered, the Chem 13 News Exam, but I meant to register for the Avogadro exam.  Can I cancel the order for the Chem 13 News Exam (and be refunded) and/or switch it to an order for the Avogadro exam? 

  • Unfortunately, no.  There are no refunds and no way for us to switch your order after it has been placed. Please make sure you are ordering the correct exam.
  • Note: Teachers should not register a student for both exams. Students who are registered to write the Chem 13 News Exam are ineligible to write the Avogadro Exam.

10. A couple of my interested students have already completed Grade 12 Chemistry and are re-taking it to improve their marks. They already graduated last June. Are they allowed to write the Chem 13 News exam? 

  • Yes, they may write it again.

11. On your website you have previous PDFs of  Chem 13 News and Avogadro Exams from 2007 to 2011.  Will you be posting any further years of past exams?

  • Unfortunately, we are unable to post further PDFs online due to accessibility issues.
  • However, we suggest that you have your students check out the following website OpenScience at https://open.science.uwaterloo.ca. This website was designed by Carey Bissonnette (former administrator for the Chem 13 and Avogadro Exam) and Laura Ingram who has now taken over this position. The current chemistry topics covered are Significant Figures, The Mole Concept, Stoichiometry, and Acids & Bases.

12. How do I proctor the exam without a physical classroom (remote teaching)?

  • After logging in to SciOn with this year's account information, you will go to the "Before the Test" section of the instructions. Here you will have the option to "Print Out" student logins (for in-person testing), or, for online proctoring, "Send Emails".
  • Clicking "Send Emails" will open a prompt allowing you to enter the first name, last name, and email address of your students. Alternatively, you can upload a 3-column CSV with the first name, last name, and email address of each student.
  • When you have all your students' info entered, you can press "send all emails" to send each student their own login credentials.
  • We recommend that you “send all emails” the day before. 

Exam day

    13. What is required to write the exam online?

    • Each student will require a device with internet access. Approved devices for writing the exams include desktop computers, laptops, Chromebooks, and iPads.
    • A scientific calculator (Note: A periodic table is supplied.)

    14. Which browsers can be used to administer or write the exam online?

    • Chrome or Firefox are the preferred browsers as they support the most modern javascript functionality. Other browsers may cause unforeseen problems. (Teachers will also need one of these browsers to administer the exam and to access student results.)

    15. I am the supervising teacher (exam administrator), but I am unable to login to the online exam platform.  What should I do?

    • Check for an email from scialert@uwaterloo.ca for your login name and password. Be sure to check your spam/junk folder.
    • If you registered for both the Chem 13 News and Avogadro exams, make sure you are using the correct login/password for each exam.  You were sent a separate login and password for each exam.
    • If necessary, contact Kathy Jackson at kjackson@uwaterloo.ca and she will reset your login/password.

    16. I accidentally clicked the start test button.  Can I restart the exam?

    • The exam can be restarted after waiting 90 minutes.

    17. Is it possible to have students write the exam at different times during the day?

    • Yes, the exam can be run/administered multiple times as long as there is at least 90 minutes between start times. For example:  If you start a test at noon, you can start it again at 1:30 [75 (test time) + 15 (buffer) = 90 minutes]

    18. At my school, I have students writing the exam at the same time but in different rooms. Can I administer the exam for students in all locations from just one computer?  

    • Yes. When you press “begin test”, students in all rooms will be able to log in and begin the exam. 

    Special accommodations

    19. What can we do if we experience an emergency or power outage, and are unable to run the exam on the prescribed day?

    • In the event that it is impossible to run the exam because of technical malfunctions, contact Kathy Jackson (kjackson@uwaterloo.ca) with an explanation and a request to extend the exam date for your school. Note that scheduling conflicts are not an acceptable reason for extending the exam date.

    Your results

    20. When will we be able to see our school results?

    • We aim to have results online within a week. If we run into issues, it may take longer.
    • You will receive an email from scialert@uwaterloo.ca notifying you when results are available.

    21. Are my students able to access their results online?

    • Only teachers can access results on SciOn.  Teachers must log onto SciOn to print results and certificates for their students.

    22. I’m having difficulty accessing my student results. Do you have any advice?

    • If you had students writing both exams, make sure you are using the correct login/password to access the results (i.e., You cannot use the Chem 13 News exam login/password to see the Avogadro exam results.)
    • Separate logins/passwords are sent by email for each exam. The email is from scialert@uwaterloo.ca.
    • If you need your login/password to be reset, contact Kathy Jackson kjackson@uwaterloo.ca.  Please check your junk/spam mail folders for an email from scialert@uwaterloo.ca before contacting Kathy.

    23. All of my student certificates say "Certificate of Distinction". Should some of them say "Certificate of Participation"?

    • All teachers were emailed a "Report to Supervisor", which also contains explicit instructions on how to change the certificate distinctions for your students.

    24. I had students participate in exams in previous years. Can I still access their results online?

    • Yes. The exams are still online. If you use previous year’s login/password to log onto SciOn, you can view the results.