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Qualifications: How Do I Get Them?

Discussion in 'MTurk Help & Resources' started by electrolyte, Jan 1, 2000.

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  1. electrolyte

    electrolyte
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    The Ghost of MTurk Past

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    Updated information for the new Worker website, effective December 15, 2017

    (The posts below this one are now outdated and do not work on the current Worker website.)


    Go to the main HITs page. Click on the "Filter" button on the top right corner. Make sure the "I'm qualified to work on" box is unchecked. Click apply. You'll now see all the HITs you both do and don't qualify for. The ones you do not qualify for are a different color and have a small lock that says "Qualify" on the far right. Click the lock to expand it and see which qualifications are required.


    Sometimes there will be a link there to take a test. Do that and see if you can pass the test to get the qual. Sometimes it'll be a link that says to click to request it. The request ones are kind of a mixed bag. Sometimes it'll be granted automatically if you just click it, and other times, it'll have to either be reviewed by the requester (or the requester just won't review it at all and you'll never receive it). To find out more about which qualifications get granted and which one are hopeless, you can ask other workers on the forum.

    The most effective way to earn qualifications is to watch the daily HITs threads for people mentioning qualification HITs or qualification tests. When one comes up, people usually tell others about it. Watch for this and jump on any HITs that are qualification tasks.

    Good luck and remember: ABQ (Always Be Qualin')!
     
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    #1 electrolyte, Jan 1, 2000
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2017
  2. electrolyte

    electrolyte
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    The Ghost of MTurk Past

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    If you click on the Qualifications tab of MTurk, you'll see that there are a lot of them available! Here is some information about them and some tips on qualifications.

    First, don't go to the qualifications tab! A ton of those are outdated or private qualifications anyway.

    Instead, go to the main HITs page and click on "All HITs" in the blue bar at the top. Make sure the box to the right that says "for which you are qualified" is unchecked. Browse the HITs that you can see. All of the HITs that are gray are ones you don't qualify for. Click on the title of the HIT to expand it and compare the qualifications required with what your value is to see why you don't qualify.

    Sometimes there will be a link there to take a test. Do that and see if you can pass the test to get the qual. Sometimes it'll be a link that says to click to request it. The request ones are kind of a mixed bag. Sometimes it'll be granted automatically if you just click it, and other times, it'll have to either be reviewed by the requester (or the requester just won't review it at all and you'll never receive it). To find out more about which qualifications get granted and which one are hopeless, you can ask other workers on the forum.

    But using that method will show you the qualifications you should/could be focused on rather than looking at the qualifications tab that lists thousands.

    Good luck and remember: ABQ (Always Be Qualin')!
     
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    #2 electrolyte, Jan 11, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2016
    correena, Pacis Amans, Janya and 6 others like this.
  3. clickhappier

    clickhappier
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    A gif made by 'turkalufagus' a couple years ago, depicting 'the truth about requesting quals' using the 'request' links (except for the rare auto-granted ones):

    [​IMG]


    Some more in-depth info:

    The official MTurk-provided quals, made by requester 'author' name 'Amazon Mechanical Turk', that any requester can use in their HITs, are:
    • The 6 built-in stats quals that all turkers automatically receive.
    • The 3 Masters qual varieties that secretively-selected lucky turkers receive. MTurk chargers requesters a 30% fee for HITs they make using the Masters quals, instead of the normal 10% fee.
    • And the 'Adult Content Qualification', which any turker can request and receive if desired, indicating agreement to be exposed to potentially inappropriate/'mature'/obscene content. Currently as of Aug 2014, 201,070 turkers (from throughout the full history of MTurk) have it.

    All the other quals are 'custom quals' made by the individual requesters. Many of the quals that exist have never actually been used by the requesters who made them, they're just clogging up the list unnecessarily. (But not all of the ones that display 'Qualified Users: 0' are actually unused; MTurk's inconsistent programming apparently doesn't update the displayed number of users when certain methods of assigning quals are used.)

    As of Aug 2014, there were 22,326 total quals in the full list. (It just keeps growing since then.)

    The multiple accounts associated with one requester, OCMP, are responsible for nearly half of them; the vast majority of those are never-used test quals and duplicates.

    Of all the real quals,
    • some were for one-time projects that are long gone;
    • some are still in active use but are 'closed', meaning there's no way for anybody who doesn't already have them to get them, as the requester stopped giving them out after an initial test period;
    • some are available to anyone who catches and does well enough on a small batch of 'qual HITs' posted by the requester (such as that HubPages example);
    • some are available to anyone who clicks on the 'Take the Qualification test' link and scores well enough on the test;
    • some appear to only require passing a test, but the test actually consists of you providing a password you won't know;
    • some ostensibly only require passing a test, but the test hasn't been updated in so long that the images/links it refers you to for some content are broken/different, making the test currently un-passable;
    • some are auto-granted to anyone who clicks on the 'Request this Qualification' link, and you usually won't know that's the case until you try;
    • and for most that say 'Request this Qualification', clicking on the link will do nothing but put you on an obscure list of qual-requests that most requesters never bother to download and assign quals to; many of these are actually closed quals, but give no indication of it. A minority of these requesters might assign you the qual if you message them to politely ask for it.

    The requester-specific quals that will be most important to any particular turker depend on the kinds of HITs you like to do, and what you're in the right place at the right time for. The best way to find more quals to try to get is to occasionally search for all HITs, instead of just those you're already qualified for, and look through those HITs for quals you might want to try to get. Due to all the useless junk in the list of all quals, that's the only practical way to go about it.

    PS: Gradually seen more since the introduction in July 2014 of the DoesNotExist aka 'Has Not Been Granted' qualification comparator option (though also seen in some cases by using an auto-granted qual that the requester subsequently changes your value on), some quals are 'antiquals' used to prevent retakes (issued to workers who've taken a certain survey before) or prevent unsatisfactory workers from continuing to perform their HITs without resorting to actual blocking (ProductRNR is one requester who does this, using automatically-changing values on auto-granted quals you have to request before doing any of their HITs).


    You can use the userscripts MTurk QualSorter and/or CH Export MTurk Quals to help keep an eye on your quals.
     
    #3 clickhappier, Jan 19, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2016
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