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Online Remote Proctoring   | 2 Min Read

Online Proctoring – A Jumpstart to Training Excellence

Written By Abhilash Malguri

What is Online Proctoring?

Online proctoring services provide a secure, simple way for invigilators to administer online exams to far-flung students (located off-campus). An online platform enables the examiners to deliver the test directly to the examinee without relying on a local testing center. Computing devices enabled with exam proctoring settings allow a student or a potential professional to take a test from anywhere, using a stable internet connection. This way, students and job applicants can access examinations from anywhere in the world, thereby reducing the expenses associated with traveling to assessment centers and saving lots of time and energy. Examinees, proctors, administrators, instructors, and test developers can all receive information on assessments anytime, anywhere. Conducting secure examinations under the supervision of a proctor will help ensure the authenticity and credibility of any exam and its outcome.

What makes online proctoring so convincing is that the live proctor can swiftly intervene when a candidate acts suspiciously, based on violations identified by Artificial Intelligence(AI). Online proctoring comes in handy in various situations, including those instances where a candidate makes particular eye and head movements during an ongoing test, turns away from the screen, or even attempts to open multiple browsers. Both instructors and students can get benefitted from remote proctoring. This service not only helps in ensuring academic integrity but also provides flexible options for students from afar to appear for exams, in the event of their inability to come to the campus.

Online Proctoring Services –  Achieving Training Excellence

The market for online proctoring and remote invigilation is expanding at a fast pace. It is being predicted to become a $10 billion market by 2026 covering all areas - educational, vocational, corporate, and training.

The computer-based assessment market is a promising one with growing internationalization of education, Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC) usage, and certifications from professionals. Because of these trends, there’s a vast potential in online proctoring and monitoring of candidates taking exams and tests remotely.

With colleges and universities that are moving towards distance learning, the number of students taking courses online has shot up phenomenally, the number going up to 6 million in the U.S. alone in 2016. With a little above a quarter of students opting for at least one online course, colleges and universities will have to turn to solutions within technology to maintain the integrity and quality of these courses.

Countries like U.S, U.K, and Europe are Now Adapting to Online Proctoring

The online proctoring market in the U.S., U.K., and Asia is growing fast but still hasn’t matured to its fullest potential. However, the future looks bright, with the education sector evolving with newer learning models, particularly in medium-sized and community college markets. In this scenario, virtual or unconventional methods of learning, such as online proctoring for exams, are now a widely accepted norm that yields favorable results.

In the corporate sector, the rising trend of online proctoring has been visible in product certification training. This solution is relatively cost-effective as it still depends upon real people delivering the actual session, to train students remotely. This is commonly used in skilling people in the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO).

The remote invigilation market has been estimated to be $60 million per annum in the United States alone. International expansion is on the cards, and while it can snatch market shares from established players, new market segments are also bound to come up. As technologies mature and operations scale up, price points for remote assessments and proctoring solutions would tend to fall.

The scenario in the U.K. and Europe has not yet taken flight, but a few players have emerged in the proctoring landscape. Many universities and industry giants are now using well-known online platforms like Mercer|Mettl when it comes to online proctoring. The market in the U.K. will be driven by factors such as the Further Education Learning Technology Action Group (FELTAG) requirements which are striving for digital technology for improvised learning and the need for secure and flexible assessments in work-based learning.

Implementation

So far, there have been no known issues or problems in implementing remote invigilation or online proctoring anywhere in the world. Most companies continue to maintain the standard procedures and are making sure that the protocols are followed.

Online Proctoring Is Implemented in Three Ways -

Live Online Proctoring

A qualified proctor will keep a watch on the student from a remote location through live audio-video, and screen share feeds.

Recorded Proctoring

The recording of the audio-video and the screen share can be later reviewed for any red flags.

Fully Automated Proctoring

Along with recording, the feeds are also monitored by the system for anything suspicious with advanced analytics. For online proctoring to be successful, it needs a robust platform. It is necessary to maintain standards of excellence and deploy complex logistics. Even though the concepts of remote examination and digital tutoring are not new, they are being seen as unconventional mediums to revolutionize learning paradigms in both corporations and education.

What Are the Advantages of Online Proctoring?

There are several benefits of opting for online proctoring services, for both the institution delivering the exam and the test-takers. Here’s a brief run-down on the advantages for both candidates and organizations conducting the exams.

Benefits for Examinees

Candidates are more at ease when they have ample time and space in a relaxed environment. Unlike traditional classroom settings, exam providers aren't confined to a specific exam day but can provide candidates with an option to pick a time of their choice for accessing the “exam window’’, which is available for a few days.

Besides, there is greater flexibility of taking the test from wherever they want to sit for it, avoiding either the last-minute hassles of reaching the venue or covering long miles to come to a test center.

Candidates taking the test from the comfort of their homes/offices without having to present themselves at an exam center is an unparalleled feeling. Attending the exam in a familiar and peaceful environment will encourage the examinee to do his/her best work.

With the advent of digital technology came the comfort of performing complicated tasks with the utmost ease. The same holds true for online assessment platforms, which switches from the pen-and-paper approach to using more sophisticated and simple online tools. Additionally, online proctoring services ensure authenticity and transparency in administering the exam.

Benefits for Organizations

Companies can make the most of online proctoring services to reduce the administrative burden, such as arranging for test centers and in-person invigilators. Moreover, It can be excruciatingly challenging to conduct test centers in multiple remote locations across the globe.

Organizations can scale their operations worldwide - by conducting more exams in less time and expanding their geographical reach. Online proctoring facilitates easy implementation of exam practices without having to worry about the bandwidth and credibility of the entire process.

Another essential feature is enhanced security wherein an invigilator who is not in sight is observing every action via a video screen. Every minute detail is taken into account, which includes watching the student's ID along with the environment and checking for infringements if there are any. In the event of any unfair behavior by the candidate, the invigilator can dismiss the test. With proctoring services like record and review proctoring, the examining body can quickly review the entire recorded session of the exam to focus on essential details.

The benefits of switching to digital technology allow examiners to reduce their dependence on traditional ways of conducting exams. The arduous task of booking exam hall space at various times is now no longer required. Unsurprisingly, more universities are opting for this service to conduct faculty examinations.

How Mercer | Mettl Can Help ?

Mercer | Mettl brings to the fore a disruptive technology known as an online proctoring suite that will help you maintain the integrity and authenticity of your exams. It’s not only a budget-friendly service; it’s also a potent tool with effective monitoring and alerting functionalities. The online proctoring services are immensely useful when conducting a wide variety of examinations ranging from entrance tests to mid-semester exams and pre-employment assessments. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a high-stake test or not; you can thwart online exam cheating by choosing any of these three modes: AI-based, live, and record and review proctoring. Our online remote proctoring suite is a secure, scalable, and cost-effective solution to conduct virtual exams. Moreover, our robust platform and proctoring services can be easily integrated with your existing system.

Conclusion

Both organizations and educational institutions are looking for effective methods of assessment and invigilation that ensure integrity, security, and faster results. This enables a lot of businesses to add more value to their services, enhance their image, and promote their brand. Hence, they are on the lookout for efficient online proctoring services. Efficiency in this regard means that an online proctoring solution must be easy-to-use and cost-effective so that it is equally helpful to both the students and organizations.

COVID Virtual Exams

Topics: Online Remote Proctoring

Originally published April 21 2020,updated May 27 2020

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