What SmartScore Goal Should I Set For My Students?

November 10, 2014


In the Classroom, IXL Insights

Have you ever wondered how IXL’s math and language arts programs are able to adapt to each student’s skill level and provide accurate, continuous assessment of student performance? It’s all about the SmartScore!

Setting SmartScore goals for your students is a great way to motivate them and encourage improvement. Read on to learn how to implement SmartScore goals in the classroom!

What is the right SmartScore goal for my students?

Setting SmartScore targets of 80 or 90

A score of 100 may be too ambitious for some students, so if they are struggling to reach that target, try challenging them to reach 80 or 90 instead! A SmartScore of 100 indicates true mastery, but a score of 80 and above still demonstrates that students have a strong understanding of the skill.

Use the SmartScore as a scaffolding strategy

Another strategy is to use the SmartScore to help students focus on improvement rather than trying to hit a certain score right away. Set practice milestones along the way to mastery to continuously motivate students. For example, when introducing new concepts, have your students work towards a SmartScore of 60. By the end of the unit, set a goal of 80. Later in the month, pick an old skill to review, and challenge them to reach 90. Extra credit for mastering skills with 100!

Monitor SmartScore improvement using reports

Don’t forget to monitor your students’ progress using IXL’s reports! The Trouble Spots reports can be especially helpful in diagnosing which skills and topics students are experiencing difficulty with, and therefore might need reteaching.

FAQ: How is a student’s SmartScore adjusted as he or she practices?

We often get asked why the SmartScore is lowered in larger intervals as students approach a score of 100. We recognize that every student learns at a different pace, so the SmartScore doesn’t penalize students heavily for missed questions early in their practice sessions. Once students begin to understand the skill and consistently submit correct answers, their SmartScore goes up and IXL presents more challenging problems. Then, in order to reach a SmartScore of 100, students must answer a certain number of questions correctly and consistently, including the most difficult problems within that skill. This is to ensure that students truly understand the material (and that they aren’t just guessing correctly!). A little bit of struggle to reach mastery can be worthwhile – once the students hit 100, they’ll know their practice has paid off and that they’ve really earned that score!

Get more information on SmartScore here. Still have questions? Leave a comment below or email us at help@ixl.com!

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All Comments (8)

Terran Smith November 13, 2014 at 3:24 pm

i like IXL because it helps me on my math work and it is,AWSOME!


lola November 14, 2014 at 5:57 am

I LOVE IXL MATH I AM SO GOOD AT IT I AM IN SIX GRADE AND I AM PROUD O BEING IN THE SIX GRADE LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


jill February 6, 2016 at 5:42 pm

i hate ixl it is not fun


Student November 21, 2016 at 4:42 pm

The SmartScore is not a helpful feature, as it actually hinders the learning process for all students. You will find that IXL has a very negative effect in the classroom. Just ask anyone who has used it.


The IXL Team November 22, 2016 at 10:42 am

Hi there–We’re sorry you feel this way. Though everyone learns differently, the SmartScore is designed to give students the time and support they need to practice a skill until they truly understand the material. We appreciate you taking the time to let us know your thoughts.


Kavya June 6, 2017 at 1:34 pm

I love ixl. Such a effective way for kids and teens to learn. I love that you don’t have to be constricted in one grade and you can go to the next grade level. I also love how easy it is to access and it makes learning very fun and educational!!!


The IXL Team June 7, 2017 at 10:48 am

Hi Kavya–Thanks for taking the time to write to us. We’re glad to hear you’ve been enjoying IXL!


Aaliyah June 13, 2017 at 8:19 am

im really enjoying ixl


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