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Software Requirements

Web Browsers

About your web browser: The use of a 64-bit browser such as Firefox and Safari is required to run the Java applets. Chrome may or may not work to run the applets.

You'll be doing electronic assessments in WebAssign. In order to be to use this application successfully and reliably, do the following:

  1. Upgrade your web browser to the latest version. Supported web browsers include IE, Firefox, Chrome, Safari. However, we don't recommend using Chrome for the reason given above.
  2. Configure your browser to allow cookies and pop-up windows from www.webassign.net.
  3. Do not allow your browser to store your WebAssign password.

If you find that WebAssign does not work properly in your web browser even after you done the above things, try clearing the cache and cookies and reducing the security level. You can also try using a different web browser.

Players and Viewers

Listed below are the plug-ins, players, and viewers that are needed for this course. All of the programs in this category are free of charge.  Download links are provided.

Adobe Reader is needed to read documents in Adobe's portable document format (pdf).

Flash is needed for on-screen drawing using a mouse or stylus.

Playing video clips: Most of the video clips are available in a universal, streaming format. No software other than a web browser (mobile browsers included) is needed to view the streamed videos. If you prefer to download videos to your local computer for viewing at your convenience, the free VideoLAN player will play all our formats.

Sun Java Runtime Environment (JRE) is needed to run all the applets used in the course. You must have the most recent version of the software. If you need to install or re-install, see the Sun download page.

If Java animations (in particular, Physlets) are blocked by your browser, do the following.

  1. Make sure that you're using a 64-bit web browser as described previously.
  2. Make sure that you're using the most recent version of Java (see download link above.) You may need to uninstall older versions first. For Windows computers, there's an uninstallation tool here.
  3. Reduce your Java security settings as follows.
  • Windows: Open the Control Panel and then double-click on Java to open the Java Control Panel.
  • Mac: Open System Preferences and then click on Java to open the Java Control Panel.
  • Windows or Mac: In the Java Control Panel, click on the Security tab. Set the Security Level to medium. You may also add the following sites to the exception list. This may help suppress repeated challenge pop-ups when you try to open applets. The sites are:


If you're warned that including an HTTP location is a security risk, click Continue.

Analysis/Data Collection Software

Apple QuickTime is needed for video analysis. If you have a Mac, QuickTime is installed already. If you your have problems with Windows Media Player trying to play QuickTime format, see this page about changing your file associations.

Logger Pro 3 is needed for the graphical analysis of data. Go to the NCSSM Software Distribution page on Google drive for installation files. See the Readme file in the Logger Pro folder. The installation password is given there.

Office Applications

Microsoft Office is needed to view, edit, and create word-processed documents and spreadsheets. See the NCSSM Software Distribution page.

Scanning and PDF document creation: Assignments prepared on paper must be scanned and converted to pdf format before uploading to the LMS. Most scanning software will scan to pdf. Otherwise, pdf documents can be printed using the following methods.

for Windows: If you don't already a pdf writer, you can download and install CutePDF for free.

for Macs: A PDF writer is probably already part of your Mac OS. When you open the print dialoque from Preview or Word, for example, look for the PDF button in the lower left-hand corner. Here's more info.


You'll need a stopwatch or stopwatch application that times to a precision of at least 0.01s. Here are some possibilities for free timing software.

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