Assessment Integrity: How Examena Levels Up Controls vs. Common Browser-Based Exam Tools

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As the virtual classroom continues to become a norm, with both potential advantages and disadvantages, the fact remains that periodic assessment and validation of learning remains critical. With various remote-assessment and integrity solutions already in use today, I am commonly approached by educational and academic professionals with questions about our solution, such as, “does your tool lock-down MORE than just the browser?”, and “does your tool prevent multi-monitor use?”, and “does your tool prevent another student helping the candidate with VPN remote desktop?”

Thankfully, our answer is “Yes!” and so much more!

More Than Just a Browser Plugin

We commonly see the ‘browser plugin’ approach to integrity as it can be a simple way to quickly ensure a few guardrails to a remote assessment. However, since this approach is limited to just the browser, the resilience leaves a lot to be desired. If the common questions above are anything to go by, there is still a strong need to address these resilience concerns from both teaching professionals and the users. In addition, stakeholders require more than just a browser plugin with little control over assessment parameters.

More often than not, assessment admins will have to circumvent the online assessment platform to manually address potential integrity loopholes.

Those looking for a more secure and robust experience can see the differentiation in Examena.

All-in-One vs. Mix & Match

Providing more than the basic perks of a SaaS solution, Examena offers:

  • Affordable subscription (per user or exam)
  • Easy installation (no need for tedious IT setup)
  • Ready integration with Blackboard, Canvas, Moodle, and other standards-compliant LMS

Assessment admins will need a platform that can secure the entire exam operations remotely, with sufficient fidelity in integrity controls to discourage improper behavior in a variety of assessment modes, e.g. remote, hybrid, open or closed book and so on.

Rather than piecing together browser add-ons and multiple third-party tools to cater to varying degrees of assessment resilience, Examena offers admins the ability to scale up and down various controls in one platform to manage a spectrum of assessments – from quizzes, tests, and assignments, to high-stakes exams.

The Real Challenge: True Assessment Resilience

Hybrid and remote exams demand a customized approach to addressing new potential scenarios related to integrity breaches in modern assessment platforms. The challenge for SaaS providers is in provisioning controls to build confidence that existing controls are sufficient to manage any incidents during the exams.

Beyond just blocking access of candidates to links and applications in their assessment interface, users must also be assured of prompt remote assistance and that their answers are submitted and captured during the course of the assessment, without running the risk of having to re-submit them.

In the event of network disruption, a good SaaS assessment tool should ensure exam continuity. Students can still confidently continue their exams, and administrators can confidently trust that the students can take their exams in a secured environment (refer to Examena Offline App to learn how this stellar function offers the ultimate integrity and resilience you need for high-stakes exams).

The Post-Pandemic Challenge: Sustainable Assessment Operations

With institutions running IT cost consolidation and security tightening programs post-pandemic, more comprehensive holistic solutions (not BandAid solutions) is necessary for sustainable learning and assessment management.

Make-shift systems brought in during the pandemic mostly do not offer lasting operational productivity for institutions. These solutions have to be evolved or replaced with a more complete assessment management platform that covers end-to-end experience from authoring to delivery and post assessment grading.

This involves not just a pure rip and replace approach to exam tools purchased, but also a thorough evaluation of the ease of installation, use, and integration of the platform to your LMS ecosystem, as well as the flexibility of the platform to support a myriad of assessment needs (not just formative assessments).

Try out MaivenPoint Examena, the award-winning assessment platform for your end-to-end assessment needs.

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