Category : Dissemination
Last Wednesday 6 December 2017, the first large-scale experiment for an online proctored exam was conducted at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. The goal of the study was to investigate to what extent students would successfully go through the stages of setting up the student computers at home and take a trial exam in light of optimizing the student experience.
The target group consisted of about 600 first year Bachelor students for a course in Statistics. The group was divided at random in two groups. Group one took the trial exam at the central exam hall of the university. Group two took the trial exam at home. The preliminary results of this experiment show that students prepare their hardware (computer, webcam, screen recording, microphone, mobile phone) at very late stages before the actual exam. For a number of students, this leads to problems during the log-in process of the proctoring session. As this number was quite high, it turned out that assisting these students by the VU proctors using the integrated chat-possibilities of the proctoring platform was difficult. Especially because in the tense and short period in which the exam could be started, communicating clearly, understanding the problem and provide solutions was not satisfactory for both students and proctors. The experiment showed that students need to be guided and urged in earlier stages to check all their equipment. Maybe guidelines should be developed in which the responsibility for a technical successful exam is transferred to the students at a certain stage before an actual exam. This experiment provided the OP4RE project already with important learning experiences that will enable the design of fit-for-purpose guidelines and rulebooks.