Is remote online proctoring suitable for distance learning?

Online proctoring seems to be a viable option for conducting exams. It makes physical invigilators redundant. With robust identity authentication processes, processes to avoid cheating, and real-time test reviews make online proctoring services a no brainer solution for universities and professional testing.

The market for online proctoring is expected to reach $10 billion by 2026. Although vaguely, but this gives us the picture of examinations in the future. Universities across the U.S. and U.K are already using proctoring services to conduct exams for distance learning programs.

While formative examinations are still part of the residential programs, summative examinations are picking pace for distance learning programs. With the internationalization of distance learning programs, proctoring services have come to rescue. It offers more flexibility to students to take examinations at their convenience, saves space, and more.

As much as proctoring services are effective, they are rife with challenges too. This raises the question – is remote online proctoring suitable for distance learning?

Effectiveness of exam proctoring services

1. With robust, scalable, and trust-worthy technologies, it makes education more open, accessible, and more flexible for students.
2. It offers universities and higher education institutions a competitive edge in an increasingly internationalized world of higher education.
3. Identity authentication using biometric keystrokes, facial recognition, knowledge-based questions make the entire conducting test a seamless process.
4. Prevention of cheating using real-time intervention, live proctoring, and detection of suspicious behavior.

Challenges for proctoring services

1. The cost of conducting an online proctored exam can vary between $3-$60 per examinee depending on the service provider. This is a major roadblock in scaling exams, which can turn out to be a deterrent.

2. Students are skeptical about allowing third-party software from accessing their computer, for possible threats. Though the credibility of the exam-conducting party is the matter here and can be overcome with building repo with students.

3. Administrative concerns regarding scaling exams to a large number of students.
4. Management concerns over institutional data pose another challenge.
5. Proctoring company requiring access to institutional infrastructure in setting up exams or making mistakes in doing so.

In a nutshell, proctoring services are a means to conduct extensive exams effortlessly, but it comes at a cost. Universities can easily scale but at a hefty price. While there are pros, there are challenges too.

At the same time, the fact—universities and businesses are effectively using proctoring solutions to conduct exams can’t be ignored. Perhaps, as it goes, one size doesn’t fit all, suits the status quo. So while it is better to overcome the challenges with customized solutions, instead of completely ignoring them.

Will the increasing trend among U.K and U.S universities offering fully distance programs conducting online exams will take away summative exams completely? This is a question that still needs time to be answered. If you’re looking for an online proctoring solution, then don’t hesitate, go for one available in the market. You never know how will things turn out. Give it a try.

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