Online exams are becoming a permanent part of education at virtually every level and it’s easy to take for granted that students will be able to adapt to a remote proctoring process. But in order to ensure that your students are experiencing the least possible impact on their testing experience as they adapt to remotely proctored exams, it’s important to understand what they’ll need. Here are some things to consider when preparing your students for online testing with remote proctoring.
Remote proctoring sessions require a stable Internet connection. Although digital equity remains a pressing issue, many school districts provide some sort of broadband access to students. According to EdSurge, 95% of the 400 rural, suburban and urban US school systems they served provide such access.
Other organizations can provide such services as well, including DigitalC’s empowerCLE+ program which provides reliable, high-speed broadband Internet to residents of the Greater Cleveland area for $18/month. For programs in your area, consider reading the National Digital Inclusion Alliance’s The Discount Internet Guidebook or visit EveryoneOn to find offers you may be eligible for. Starlink, a division of SpaceX, currently provides over 10,000 users with Internet access.
Computer or Laptop
In order to take an exam proctored online, test takers will also need a computer that is able to support any software required. Amid the pandemic, some college student organizations opted to pool money from what would have gone to lavishly planned events that were cancelled into a fund for students to purchase computers or any other essentials.
Other colleges had robust technology programs in place already including Shenandoah University with its iMLearning initiative, a laptop loaner program which provides all incoming first-year and graduate students with access to a MacBook Pro, iPad and Apple Pencil. An alternative to having new laptops is allowing students to securely and remotely access desktops and apps on campus computers using programs like Citrix Receiver which can be used through an Internet browser.
In order to be approved for an exam session, students must submit valid identification materials as well. Online proctored exams may also have guidelines on what is or is not allowed in the room during the exam sessions. It would be beneficial for students to read over such guidelines to avoid accidental flags.
Ideal Test-taking Environment
To ensure concentration and reduce the likelihood of flags by AI-proctoring systems, test takers should take their exams in a well-lit, quiet area away from interruption. Good lighting can help proctoring services match students with any identification provided, allowing easy entry into exam sessions.
Students may have to inform family members beforehand of exam schedules if working at home or finding alternative locations to take exams. Many libraries and colleges have study rooms that can be reserved in advance. The MidTown Tech Hive, another Digital C program that offers event and office space from day passes to long term stays. Other similar companies with office spaces and conference rooms that can accommodate just one person or a small company include WeWork, Regus, and LiquidSpace.
Although remote proctoring does require additional preparation, the flexibility of taking an exam whenever and wherever, as well as cutting costs more than make up for it. By reviewing measures necessary prior to an exam session, students can come in feeling prepared and ready.