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"You Shall Pass!" Users’ Barriers in Online Evaluation

In this article, we will describe the crucial factors that hamper students from successful exam taking

In our communication with students, we often note that not all of them are fully aware of the online- and offline-examination nature differences. Many tricks and habits that can work during traditional classroom exams do not work for remote testing with online proctoring. We have analyzed key factors that hinder users in distance mode.

Too lazy for that

Laziness is something that especially affects the exam preparation process. For example, practice shows that during the traditional paper exams students are rather unlikely to cram the textbook from cover to cover. Most commonly, they just rely on luck to get a question that they know fairly well. However, most online exams take the format of general testing. To get a good grade, test-takers ought to answer dozens of different questions correctly.

Therefore, our tip #1: do not be lazy and do not rely on luck.

Leaving it to chance

“That could work”. This is what you hear from students that are going to cheat in proctored examinations. Indeed, both in the classroom and in online learning, students have many opportunities to sneak a peek at the correct answers. But it will not happen if the examination is proctored. In this case, the probability of unnoticed cheating tends to zero.

Our tip #2: do not leave it to chance. Better prepare for the exam properly - and then you won't have to worry about cheating at all.

Exam Anxiety

Excessive anxiety is an ever-present hindrance to exam success. In the online examination era, this issue has become more pronounced: some of the test-takers feel uncomfortable taking exams under close scrutiny. However, others may think that the home atmosphere helps to loosen up while testing, as well as being alone without the pressure of a large audience allows them to concentrate.

What is more, some students believe that they may be deliberately underestimated. Unfortunately, teacher’s bias is a factor that can sometimes affect both the exam flow and its results for the examinees. But this cannot happen in online proctored exams. There are only three objective factors in these exams: students, test, and proctor.

Examus team puts special emphasis on proctors’ selection and training to ensure their professional competence and reduce stress for the students. Our specialists have no stake to act in sympathy/antipathy towards students. Objectivity and impartiality are the factors that directly affect the proctors’ reputation, and even their salary. They are constantly monitored by the proctor team managers tracking the work quality.

Our tip #3: Don't worry. Online exams with proctoring often bring even less stress and anxiety than traditional classroom exams.

Technical issues

Taking an offline exam, students require only a piece of paper and a pen.
The online thing is totally different. Here, test-takers need a computer, a stable Internet connection, a serviceable camera, and a microphone. If students face technical issues, Examus technical support team and our knowledge base will help to tackle them.

However, it happens that the root cause of problems is difficult to determine immediately. For example, one day we were approached by a student reporting she couldn’t start the test due to a pre-exam system check fail. The result showed that the equipment itself was in order, there were no issues with the Examus server either. The examinee claimed that she has the most up-to-date router and the fastest tariff from the provider.
However, after the real speed checking, it turned out that the laptop of 2011 simply could not support the traffic that the router gives out. The computer had an outdated Wi-Fi module, and its speed was not enough to broadcast a high-quality video stream from the camera without interference. The problem was solved only after the student switched to a more modern computer.

Tip #4: It is better to make sure in advance that your technical equipment is suitable for passing the online exam with the Examus proctoring. You can find the minimum technical requirements here.

Examus team

November 26, 2021.
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