After the outbreak of coronavirus cases worldwide, schools, colleges, and universities have decided to conduct exams online. Conducting an online examination is not as simple as it sounds.
There are chances of paper getting leaked or students finding means to cheat online. However, this hurdle can be easily solved using secure online exam software.
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In fact, the market value of online examination software was estimated to be US$ 252.82 Mn in 2018 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 13.12%.
The Use of Online Exam Software Management
An online examination management system provides the entire method for conducting an online exam test series for institutions — from candidate registrations to assessments and distribution of exam results.
The online exam platform helps conduct a series of actions that makes it easy to carry out an online examination. It includes:
- Enrollment of students
- Gathering students details
- Creation of hall tickets
- Registering the test time
- Verification of students
- Preparing and conducting a fair exam
- Obtaining feedback from students
- Result assessment
Besides, it comes with a set of benefits that can’t be ignored. For starters, it makes it easy to assess the exams. What’s more, it increases the efficiency for both the regulators and the applicants.
Tips to Secure Your Online Examinations
There are various challenges associated with the use of online examination software. The foremost thing is to keep any unfair practices in check while ensuring the privacy of students’ data. So how do you do that?
Here are a few techniques that might come in handy while conducting an online examination.
1. Secure Browser
Safe browsing is a crucial way of preventing fraud. A secure browser warns if a candidate is trying to cheat. The following activities are restricted with secure browsers —
It sends an alert to the student if they attempt to open a new window or tab. If it happens more than thrice, the student faces disqualification, and the exam tab closes automatically.
There is a constraint over the use of the keyboard. The test screen will immediately switch off if a student attempts to use a keyboard. Also, copying, pasting, and screen capturing keyboard shortcuts are inaccessible.
2. Remote Proctoring
Remote proctoring enables students to take the exam remotely while keeping a check on any kind of malpractice.
It confirms students’ identities using electronic devices such as a camera and a microphone and monitors the screen to flag any suspicious behavior or activity.
Here’s how remote proctoring techniques work in different ways:
- Image: To identify a student’s identity. Image proctoring is a protection system that uses a web camera to capture photographs of students appearing for an online examination.
- Video: To monitor a student during an examination. Video proctoring ensures the authenticity and protection of the online examination using a live video feed or recorded video footage.
- Screen: To observe all activities of a student. It live streams students’ examination screens.
- Voice: To listen to the student’s voice whenever the remote invigilator wants. Audio proctoring is a technique for recording the remote student’s sounds or audio. The invigilator or moderator can later assess the audio recordings for unusual audio content or abnormalities.
3. Data Encryption
Basically, data encryption translates data into another code so that individuals will require a password or security key (a.k.a decryption key) to access it. To avert unauthorized access to the question paper, data encryption plays a crucial function.
The complete communication of server and student is also secured using an encrypted communication protocol. With the use of high-level encryption techniques, encoding information would be difficult to decipher. Now, this guarantees that the question papers shared between the server and the student remain private.
4. Audit Logging
Audit logging is a powerful mechanism that tracks every action performed by the user. The best online exam software has a sophisticated tracking system that records login, exams procedure, questions and answers, and logout activities. In audit logging, geotagging can help in displaying the student’s actual location.
These logs are recorded for each candidate appearing for the online examination and can be accessed by the proctor later. Audit logging is crucial in case if any student is accused of cheating, their records can be accessed later for verification.
5. Authorization & Authentication
The IP authorization and authentication approach indicates that the access and operation of the online exam software restrict or limit to a specific IP address.
When logging in to the admin panel, it’s important to have IP-based authentication so that users attempting to login from specific IP are authorized to reach the program. It only allows access to particular IP addresses and assures full examination security.
Another control procedure can be randomizing the sequence of the examination; the instructor must change or shuffle at least one-third of multiple-choice or objective questions.
Randomizing or using varied sequences for questions and answers reduces the chance of cheating.
How to Select the Best Online Exam Software for an Institution?
The best open source examination software for an institution includes all the features needed to control different phases of the examination process. Besides, it should be simple, easy to use, and affordable.
One cannot disregard the safety aspect of execution while conducting online examinations. You can protect the online examination software with a unique security system, such as remote procurement, audit logging, and a secure browser.
Conducting an online examination can be troublesome for the proctor if the right measures are not deployed. Switch to an online exam platform and make the examination secure.