MBA Research
Not-for-profit, research-based support for all Business Administration educators: entrepreneurship, finance, hospitality, management/administration, and marketing.

Curriculum & Teaching - Other Articles

Our BPA Relationship

All of MBA Research research data, along with the Consortium’s entire range of services, are available to all Career-Tech student organizations (CTSO) serving Business Administration students.  BPA is a sponsor of the national Business Administration standards that are available free of charge to all local and state programs.  

MBA Research instructional tools, particularly LAP modules and the MBA Learning Center (online), provide strong support for students preparing to compete in BPA competitive events, with the exception of those focused solely on technology.

Representatives of BPA serve on the task force that guides the MBA Research National High School Business Administration Accreditation program.  This initiative is designed to recognize exemplary Business Administration programs that incorporate best practice, including the use of student organizations such as FBLA/PBL for leadership development and student recognition.

NOTE:  All BPA advisers in member states are eligible for member pricing on all products and services.   MBA Research representatives are frequent exhibitors at the national BPA conference.

Fair Assessment of Teams

“But he didn’t do any of the work!” Teachers using team-based projects hear this complaint regularly. Those of us in the business world may think it regularly as we work in a variety of team situations. And as we train teachers to use project-based learning in the High School of Business™ program, this is one of the most frequent concerns voiced. As blogger Kathleen Piper writes, two types of students are most concerned about working in the teams required of project-based learning: “Students of the first type generally do not enjoy school at all, and are looking for the path of least resistance. The second type of student has already been very successful in traditional classrooms and is deterred by the challenges of this new model.” Piper goes on to offer three innovative ways in which teachers can more accurately assess each student’s work within a team. If teamwork is used in your classroom, it’s definitely worth a read.

Talking PBL in Your Classroom

Taking ownership of a project is a key benefit of project-based learning.  Proponents say that ownership leads to engagement, which leads to a deeper level of learning.  But there is another side of the coin: what if students don’t take ownership?  Do they really want to be responsible for the project?  In this exercise, you will ask your students and find out how they feel about their learning.

Hold a classroom discussion.  Use these questions:

A) In all of your years of school, what academic activity do you think you learned the most from?  Why?  What caused you to learn more during that activity than in other classes? 

B) Think about a time when a teacher, parent, or coach has given you responsibility for a project.  Did you do better or worse work than if the teacher had given explicit instructions?  Why or why not? 

C) Take a few minutes to think about this question, then write down your response.  If you were going to teach a class of 2nd graders how to count money, how would you do it?

After the responses are written, ask the students to share their answers.  Then ask the class to summarize the main points from the discussion regarding learning.  Be sure to draw out the concept of ownership.  Is that important in learning?  Why or why not?

Team-building exercises

In project-based learning classrooms, students learn 21st Century Skills in addition to subject-area content.  Communicating and collaborating in teams is emphasized.  To practice teamwork in your classroom, try some of the activities featured in this website:

Administrator Account: An account that allows authorized individuals to create, change, enable, and activate student accounts.

Student Account: A record of each student’s exam information, history, and results. Each student is assigned a unique user name and password to access the WebXam system upon his/her registration. The student account must be enabled for the student to access the account, but cannot access the actual test until the student has been activated. NOTE: Students will not be able to see their scores upon completion of the test.

State/Provincial Administrator: This is the top-level administrator. This individual determines the testing protocol for his/her state/province and has access to all school and student data, including results.

District/Regional Administrator: This is a mid-level administrator. This individual coordinates online testing processes for a specific group (e.g., districts) of testing sites/schools. This individual can retrieve results for only the schools that fall within his/her group. The use of district/regional administrators is determined by the state/province administrator.

Local Administrator: All testing schools/sites have a local administrator, most often this individual is the DECA advisor/classroom teacher. If enabled by higher administrators, this administrator can manually register students, change student accounts, and enable and activate student accounts. This administrator does not have the ability to access their students’ test scores.

Credit (Exam Credit): Credits are the number of exams purchased; one credit = one exam. Demo Test: A short, trivia test used to verify the testing site’s technical compatibility with the WebXam system; the demo test is not a study tool.

User name and Password: Security measures that allow individual administrators and students to access designated information at the WebXam online testing center.

EMIS Number: A unique sequence of alpha and/or numerical numbers that is required when manually creating a student account. Although you may select any sequence you want to use, DECA testers most often use the student’s school ID number.

Enable: The function carried out by the designated administrator that allows students to access their individual student accounts. Once enabled, the student has the opportunity change limited types of information, such as their WebXam passwords. NOTE: Student exams cannot be activated until their accounts are enabled.

Activate: The function carried out by the designated administrator to allow selected students to access and take their exams within 60 minutes of the activation time. Student accounts must be enabled before they can be activated.

Proctor: An individual who is responsible for overseeing the testing process to deter dishonest behavior; the use of proctors is decided by individual states/provinces

Bulk-student Upload Spreadsheet: Used to add all of the students’ data (i.e., name, school, district, event, test, etc.) to the WebXam system at one time, eliminating the need to add students manually

Site Registration Spreadsheet: For states/provinces new to online testing, this spreadsheet is used to register all schools that will be participating in online testing; For states/provinces that have previously tested online, the spreadsheet is used to add or change site information, when necessary.

Event Code: DECA event code

Test Number: Designates the appropriate exam the student takes in relation to his/her DECA event

General Information

  • Online tests are administered by the MBA Research and Curriculum Center through WebXam*.
  • Each state/province designates a state/provincial-level administrator, and if desired, district/regional-level administrators to coordinate the efforts of the local/school administrators (DECA advisors).
  • The tests are administered by the local (school) test-site administrator (teacher/DECA advisor).
  • Tests may be administered at any time during the pre-determined open testing window
  • Tests are taken individually from any computer with Internet access
  • Crash recovery applications prevents data loss
  • Password protection maximizes testing and data security—you control data access
  • Students may be tested as a group, in several groups, or individually
  • No one ever sees the entire exam at one time
  • Students will have only one opportunity to take the test
  • Test questions show up in random order; the order will not be the same for everyone, virtually eliminating illegal copying
  • Students will have the option to go back and change answers or skip over a question and then come back later.
  • Students and site administrators will not have access to test scores. District/Regional and or state/provincial-level administrators can view and download test scores immediately.
  • Quantity pricing for online exams is based on the number of exams purchased by the state. Click here for pricing information.

*WebXam is the actual exam site. It is operated by The Ohio State University and delivers many different exams for various states and organizations. You use this site to manually register students, administer tests, and retrieve testing results.

Technical Requirements
Tests can be taken through any modern web browser (i.e., Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Safari) that is running on a computer connected to the Internet. Proxy servers, network security appliances, and other applications or devices that are in the middle of the communication between the testing computer, and the Webxam website may interfere with the secure testing process.

To reduce the risk of potential technical issues during the actual examination period, each testing site will have access to a short, trivial “demo” test to verify the testing site’s compatibility with the WebXam system. The “demo test” is available to each testing site after student registration is complete. By taking the demo test several days prior to the designated exam date, the local technical coordinator can identify and fix technical issues, ensuring that a smooth testing process. For more information about potential technical issues, see the FAQs.

If access to school computer labs is an issue, consider using local community colleges as testing sites. This is an ideal way to introduce students to their campuses!

Related Links
Glossary of Online Assessment Terms

After you have contacted MBA Research (Contact Information) to confirm that you plan to test online, we will send your state/provincial coordinator detailed instructions and forms:

  • Test-site spreadsheet: Used to add all participating schools, along with their district numbers. (Previous states/provinces that have tested online receive a spreadsheet of existing sites to make additions or changes). The state/provincial coordinator will e-mail spreadsheet with corrections/additions, as well as your testing window (dates) to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
  • Student registration spreadsheet: This is used to bulk-upload student data to the WebXam system. The spreadsheet must contain all of the requested information. You receive a new spreadsheet template every year.
    • Send copies of the template to district/local administrators to complete and return to you
    • Integrate district/local administrator’s spreadsheets into a master spreadsheet
    • E-mail master spreadsheet to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
  • After you have been notified by MBA Research that your test site corrections have been made and the student data have been uploaded, access WebXam using your user name and password to print a list of the district/local administrators’ user names and passwords.
  • District/Regional (Local) Administrators Instructions: This document explains to local administrators/proctors how to change and enable student accounts and activate exams on testing day. Use our instructions, adapt it so it is suitable for your needs, or develop your own. E-mail the instructions to district/local administrator instructions to appropriate individuals, along with their WebXam user names and passwords, which you receive after the schools/sites have been set up.
  • After students have been registered and local administrators have their instructions, the state/provincial coordinator needs to:
    • Ensure that the local/site administrators take the Demo Test to check technical compatibility. (Local administrators need to contact their school technical coordinator/network pecialist if experiencing technical problems. In most cases, the problems are related to security filters, proxy caching etc.)
    • Add late registrations manually, and ensure that the added student accounts are “Enabled” prior to testing day
    • Ensure that the appropriate students have been activated within 60 minutes of taking the test on test day
    • Ensure that all students have submitted their tests by confirming that there are no un-submitted tests in the “Saved Student Tests” section on the WebXam web site.
  • View results and save exam data as desired
  • If you are conducting both district/regional and state/provincial testing online, advise MBA Research of your cutoff date at least 10 days before you want the switch to state-level exams to occur.

Contact us for DECA Online Testing at:

PH: 800-448-0398 x 0
Fax: 614-486-1819
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

MBA Research & Curriculum Center
1375 King Avenue
PO 12279
Columbus, OH 43212-0279

When you buy a LAP Module, you’re licensed to copy:

  • as many as you want
  • for use in your school/program
  • for a minimum of five years

LAP Modules sold by MBA Research are copyrighted and subject to federal copyright law.  Each purchase, however, includes our CopyIT! license at no additional cost.  CopyIT! authorization is as follows:

Purchasers of our LAP products are authorized to duplicate multiple copies for local use for a period of five years (60 calendar months) from date of purchase, subject to the following restrictions:

  • Materials may NOT be posted to any website or copied to any other medium without the express written permission of MBA Research.  Permission will be granted upon proof that outside access is fully blocked.
  • Original copies were purchased directly from MBA Research.
  • LAP (or selected pages of LAP) is duplicated in its entirety, including any copyright notice appearing on the original.
  • Copies are used (only) with students enrolled in classes at the individual school facility (building) for which the product was originally purchased.  (NOTE: This specifically precludes duplicating of materials for use with students in other schools within the same school district or for other school districts.)
  • Copies are not sold or bartered, with the following exception: copies may be sold directly to your own students at a price not to exceed the actual cost of duplication and a reasonable handling fee.

MBA Research reserves the right to revise this CopyIT! license at any time and without notice.  However, for your convenience, should this policy change we will make every effort to include notice of such change to all MBA Research Perspectives subscribers.  (Subscription is free. Register here.)

Before they go to print, all LAP modules undergo the scrutiny of teachers in the classroom. The process is simple and straightforward. Instructors participating in the field test or review process receive the LAP as three PDF files via e-mail. 

Field testers actually test the material with students in the classroom. Documents (instructions, FAQ information) are sent to guide you through the process. Field reviewers read and evaluate the LAP content and complete the questionnaire. For your feedback, you will receive free materials (downloads) of the final LAP module that you tested or reviewed.

Email your field test/review preferences to Kristen Auletto: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Use the subject "LAP Module Field Test" or "LAP Module Field Review". 


Our thanks go out to the instructors who participate in field tests/reviews for our LAP modules!

We'll need your student information in either an Excel spreadsheet or as a comma separated values (CSV) file.

Required: We must have the following data in the spreadsheet or csv, in this order:

  • First Name
  • Last Name

The system requires both a first name and a last name for all users. We won't be able to process your file of users if any of them are missing either first or last name.

Optionally you can include:

  • Student ID
  • Password

Example XLS:

First Name Last Name
Becky Thacker
Samuel Langhorne
Joe Harper

Example CSV:


Email your file (either XLS or CSV) to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.