5 things to consider when running online assessments

Online exams have become the day’s trend, and they are here to stay. Online exams can help you save time and money, especially when it comes to large-scale testing. However, this is no small feat. Before starting your online exams, you should be aware of some essential things to consider, such as keeping track of time or preventing cheating.

5 things to consider when running online assessments 1

This article discusses five things you need to consider before setting up your online exams.


Keeping track of the time.

When running an online exam, you must keep track of the time using a stopwatch, timer, clock, or digital watch. However, the most common method for timing student responses is by using a stopwatch or timer, which allows them to see their reaction times without having access to their computer screen during the test. However, this might cause problems if some students use laptops rather than desktops, so ensure everyone has access before choosing this method!

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Monitoring students during the exam to avoid cheating.

When you are running online exams, students must keep their screens private. Invigilators can easily avoid this by ensuring that all students have unique usernames and passwords for their accounts; this way, if a student logs into someone else’s account, they cannot view the other’s screen.


It is also vital to monitor phones and other devices during an exam. While some may think using these items is harmless or beneficial (for example, using phones as alarms), it can be difficult for teachers to decide whether students are using them appropriately. As such, it’s better to only allow devices during exams, like an approved calculator or headset.


Ensure that students have the right tools.

It is vital to ensure students have the right tools to use when taking exams. Students may use their own devices, but it is also possible that you will decide to keep them from this option.

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If students can bring their own devices, what kinds of devices will they be able to use? Will they need a smartphone or tablet with internet connectivity and earbuds? What about laptops and desktop computers with a webcam and microphone? Will everyone have access at all times (or during certain parts of the test)?


Prepare for technical problems

Having a backup plan for technical problems that may occur during the exam. Consider using an external service provider, such as proctoring or virtual testing centres.

Use an internet connection that is reliable and fast enough to handle the amount of traffic you expect during your exam period. If your organisation has multiple locations, consider having each one connected to a router with enough bandwidth to accommodate everyone taking the exam at once (which could be thousands of people)


Make use of online exam services.

Invigilators can also use online exam invigilation services to help them run online exams successfully. A digital services team offers help in various ways, including sourcing and arranging a venue, managing candidate data, conducting post-exam reporting, and developing customised procedures.

Running an online exam can be challenging, but the benefits outweigh the challenges. It’s essential to make sure that you have all of your bases covered before you begin. The more prepared you are for problems, the easier it will be to deal with them when they arise.

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