Trouble with refraction

I had a bunch of trouble getting the most basic refraction setup working in 4.4.1. I went back to an older version I had installed (4.0.2) and set it up with no trouble at all. Did something change in between these versions? Is it possible that my installation is corrupted? Any ideas are appreciated. Cheers

this is the kind of thing I am trying to do:

I had some feedback that perhaps I was not being clear or providing enough information. The basic premise is that I looked at the documentation and other examples of refraction setups and I feel like I understand how it works. When I take the exact steps in 4.4.1 that i do in 4.0.2 for the most basic possible refraction setup I do not see any refraction. I am running a 2700k i7, 16 gb of ram, a nvidia 560 gtx running driver version 340.52 (just updated it), windows 7x64.

I just created a new video with audio so I could attempt to explain myself better. I am really trying to be as clear as possible. Please let me know if I am overlooking something obvious.

here are screenshots of the materials and settings in both versions

4.0.2 (working)

4.4.1 (not working)

Just in case someone else runs into this. It was resolved. I believe it was a problem with my hardware. Shortly after this post, my video card died (560gtx). When I got my replacement (770gtx) I no longer had this issue. Thanks.