Risks and Benefits Involved in Online Proctoring

Thanks to the Internet, anything is possible nowadays, from shopping, gambling, data entry, to wedding planning or recruiting. Internet is an amazing place for learning and it sure eases the efforts for people to get various certifications.

The online proctoring services (the remote proctoring) include a process by which a candidate is going to be proctored live with the help of the Internet and a web camera, eliminating the need for the candidate to be in the same location as the proctors.

How is the proctoring done?

The candidate that is proctored stays in front of his/her computer system, facing the web camera. The proctors are going to actually see the candidate through the camera. They’re capable to notice any sign of cheating activities (unauthorized study materials, cheat notes or use of various electronic devices). The proctors may even take a look at the whole examination room. He/she can notice the subtlest eye movement of the candidate away from the screen, which is a hint that the candidate is possibly checking some notes.

What are the types of proctoring?

There are three main types of proctoring methods:

  • Online proctoring

During this type of proctoring, the candidate is going to be see and monitored by a qualified proctor. The proctors are trained and well prepared for this sort of examination. They’re able to identify any cheating method and just one may monitor 16-32 test takers at the same time.

The online proctoring eliminates the location constraints and the distance between the proctor and the candidate may be thousand miles away. Some scheduling is necessary and similar to the offline proctored test.

  • Recorded proctoring

In this kind of proctoring method, no proctor for monitoring the feed on real time is necessary. Instead of a real person, an audio-video and screen is going to share the feeds of the candidates that are recording throughout the examination. The records are going to be played in fast forward way for identifying any cheating method or suspicious activity of a candidate. This type of proctoring eliminates the schedule or the place constraint, which makes it really effective. It still requires a human for reviewing the tests and the examination per se.

  • Advanced automated proctoring

This is in fact an advanced form of online proctoring. It requires audio-video and screen share feeds of the candidates that are going to be recorded. It gives feeds on the candidates and any strange activity during the examination. It helps the students focus better on the test and uses the face recognition method for identifying the students taking the test. It’s a cost efficient method that eliminates the need for a specific location or scheduling.

What’s the use of online proctoring?

The online proctoring has been upgraded over the last years and its popularity has increased a lot. It has become a world-wide basis able to deliver tests to so many students.

The cost saving is the most important benefit of online proctoring, but there are many other good and bad things attached to it.

There’s no need for building an established side and even the student is going to save money and time with the online proctoring.

Many academic institutions are currently using the remote proctoring for various activities, but this shouldn’t eliminate the importance of the downsides.

What are the benefits of online proctoring?

Even the benefits go beyond our list, scroll down to find out the most important advantages of online proctoring:

  • Benefits for the candidates

Online proctoring brings plenty of good things to the students:

  • The student gets to choose where to sit during the examination. He/she doesn’t need to take time off work for travelling to the test center
  • The flexibility is amazing. As the exam provider isn’t confined to one certain exam day, the student gets an “exam window” of few days in which to sit the exam. Therefore, he/she may actually choose the best time for them.
  • The privacy of the exam is important and many professional people don’t fancy the idea of a busy test center sitting an exam. The privacy of their very own office is something they appreciate highly.
  • The candidate gets to sit nice and comfortable in his/her own home/office. A familiar and quiet environment is also going to help one concentrate and perform better.
  • A candidate works on the personal computer just like in any other day. He/she can definitely use the online tools (text editors, spreadsheets) that eliminate the strain on the hands when writing for many hours.
  • Benefits for the organizations

There are many reasons for which the organizations should go with the online proctoring:

  • Exams run a lot more frequent and the organization doesn’t have to concentrate all of the exams during a short amount of time.
  • The organization isn’t going to have to fix in-person invigilators and test centers, which definitely eliminates so many problems for the administration. This is more important when running test centers in several remote locations all over the world.
  • The security is increased as the unseen invigilator is going to be able to view constantly the candidate, eliminating the risk for cheating. In case of serious infringements, they can also eliminate the access to the exam. The exam may also be recorded so that the video can offer the required info later on.
  • The organization is going to be able to scale worldwide, running more exams and covering greater geographical area.
  • It eliminates the pressure of exam hall space that universities deal with during the exam period.

What are the risks?

Even if there are so many good things related to the online proctoring, there are also some downsides that need to be considered. They come from various areas:

  • Exam structure
  • Testing environment
  • Comfort and anxiety
  • Cost
  • Technology
  • Perception or remote proctoring
  • Access/convenience and geographical reach
  • Privacy

For instance, the anxiety and comfort level may vary from one candidate to another. One may like a lot using the technology from the comfort of their home, which makes the ignoring of the camera really easy. However, one may find the same camera really distraction, perceiving the limitations on eye and body movements (that are mandatory during this sort of exam) really stressful and even overwhelming.

The same thing happens for the access and convenience. Even if the certification possibilities may be available for people living/working in remote places, the possibilities may require some specific technology and good internet access.

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