Online proctoring

As we are currently in a period in which we are all very busy learning together and a lot of exams are taking place, we would like to pay some attention to the new way of taking exams: online proctoring, at home and in front of your computer!

The switch to online

After the outbreak of the Coronavirus, physical education was banned and so was making exams at the VU locations. A suitable alternative had to be found to continue the planned exams and not let anyone delay their studies. The only way that could lead to this was by making online examinations. For this, you will need to install a program on your computer. While you are taking an exam, this program analyzes the participant’s behavior and to make sure that no fraud is committed. In this way, the value of the final diploma remains valid. There are a number of programs that are used for making exams and the most common ones are Proctorio, Zoom and Canvas quizzes. In this blog we focus on Proctorio, because this program is used most frequently. 

Is privacy at stake?

After the news came out about the new way of taking exams, there was a lot of commotion. Especially student organizations and youth organizations weren’t happy, as they felt it intrudes student’s privacy. While taking an exam, you will be continuously monitored and the sound will be recorded. According to Gerrit-Jan Zwenne, professor of privacy law at Leiden University, this way of organizing exams should only be implemented if there really are no other possibilities. The VU first explored other possibilities and finally came to the conclusion that it would be impossible to have the exams taken physically with the available capacity and invigilators. That is why the VU finally opted for this way. 

Handling personal data

The VU is fully responsible for the processing of the data. The VU has a legal responsibility to ensure that your personal data is processed in accordance with applicable privacy legislation, including the General Data Protection Regulation (AVG). The data does not end up in the wrong hands and therefore making an exam online is safe.

Not mandatory

Another important point to mention is that you are not obliged to make the exams online. If you really don’t want to, you can indicate this and pass the exams when there is physical education again. Unfortunately, this can lead to a study delay and of course no one is waiting for this.

We hope that we will soon be able to take exams in exam rooms again as usual. However, online exams are unavoidable at this moment and it is important not to suffer a study delay due to the current situation. Are you busy learning and do you want to know what the influence of caffeine is on studying? Then read this blog. Are you curious whether it is wise to listen to music while studying? Then read this blog.