Requiring a proctored exam for your online course adds a layer of complexity to your course management, but it can go a long way to preserve academic integrity, as students have to offer proof of identity and take your exam under a qualified proctor's watchful eyes. Several proctoring options are available for SOU students:
- ProctorU – Provides 24/7 online proctoring services at a time and location selected by the student. Exams must be set up in Moodle or another online testing environment. Testing fees paid by students are based on the length of the exam. If you would like to make this option available to your students, you must enter your exam information into the ProctorU database as explained in the ProctorU Instructions for Faculty. Please follow the instructions carefully.
- National College Testing Association (NCTA) Locations – Requirements and fees vary.
- Other Schools or Libraries – Local schools, community colleges, universities, or public libraries often have individuals who offer proctoring services upon request; fees may be assessed.
- SOU Disability Resources – Available only to students with documented disabilities.
If you plan to require a proctored exam, you will need to do the all of the following:
- Include information about proctoring requirements in your syllabus. Also include a link in your Moodle site to the following: Proctored Exam Information for Students.
- Notify students well in advance of a proctored exam to allow them time to find a proctor and provide you with the proctor contact information. (See suggested questionnaire below.)
- Set up the exam in Moodle (or other learning management system provided by your publisher, if applicable). Your test doesn't have to be ready until the exam open date; you just have to know when it will be available to students.
- Set a non-predictable password to be given to the proctor (not to the student).
- Contact the designated proctors to provide the password for the test, time limit(s) and any special instructions for the test (use of calculators, reference materials, etc.). See the ProctorU Instructor Guide if you plan to give students the option to take their test with ProctorU. Note: Be sure to allow sufficient lead time—scheduling can't be done at the last minute.
- If the exam is a paper test, send a copy of the test to proctors well before the scheduled exam date to ensure that they receive it before the first scheduled exam time. Note that ProctorU and many other proctoring agencies do NOT accommodate paper tests.
- When students are ready to begin taking the test, they will log into Moodle, open the course and click on the link for the exam. The proctor will enter the password you have provided.
- Be aware of when your students are taking proctored exams and make an effort to be available in case of technical difficulties with your test. Make sure that your contact information is available to the proctors in case they need to contact you.
TIP: If you have the choice of proctoring either a midterm or a final, you may wish to choose the midterm, as the stakes are lower and there is more time available if students encounter difficulties and have to reschedule. Also, you’re better off specifying a particular exam for proctoring rather than allowing students to choose from two or three different exams. It's complex enough to track one test!
You should survey your students early in the term to find out where and when they plan to take the exam. Creating a questionnaire in Moodle from our proctored exam template will make it much easier to manage this process. See the Moodle Questionnaire Guide for instructions on setting up a questionnaire. In the Content options section of the Questionnaire page, be sure to select the Proctored Exam Information template as shown here.
You can revise or add questions as necessary. Responses can be easily downloaded as a spreadsheet to help you manage contact information for the proctors.
Creating a Proctored Test in Moodle
- Instructions for setting up a test in Moodle can be found in the Moodle Quiz Creation Guide.
- Ensure that the quiz open and close dates and times are correct. Use the Quiz override feature for any students requiring testing accommodations (extra time or testing before or after the regular testing period).
- We recommend that you set up the Review settings so that students see no more than their score while the exam is still open. After it has closed, you may wish to allow them access to their responses so they can see which they missed and which were correct.
- For major exams like midterms and finals, we do not recommend displaying answers at any point unless you intend to retire all of the questions in the exam and never use them again.
- Note that when taking the test, students will log into Moodle as usual and open the test in the course site. However, the proctor will enter the password you have provided in order for the student to attempt the exam.