Once used mostly for video chats and meetings, webcams have become a vital component of remote testing. Online proctoring tools with webcams allow proctors to monitor students and record test sessions. But while webcams are a valuable part of online proctoring, they often cause frustrations amongst test takers. Now, innovative assessment solutions with AI technology are changing that.

Online Proctoring Tools: Webcam-Only Creates Frustrations

Most students recognize the need to protect academic integrity during online exams. But many are troubled when that process relies only on webcams. Suddenly, a stranger is staring through your computer and into your personal space. What’s more, webcams alone are not enough to provide a level playing field for students. In fact, they can create significant barriers to education and make test-taking an uncomfortable and invasive process.

Poor Performance

While proctoring a webcam-only proctoring solution requires constant human oversight. For students, knowing a person is watching their every move can be deeply unsettling. This compounds existing test anxiety and may jeopardize a student’s right to learn. As one student told the New York Times,

The idea of someone just closely watching me makes me feel insecure, and I wouldn’t give my best performance on a test. I wouldn’t want my grade to get bumped down just because I didn’t feel comfortable rather than not studying as much.

When it comes to online proctoring tools, webcam-only solutions are antithetical to the goal of supporting students in their learning.

Questionable Quality

Student assessment tools should not measure their success by the number of violations they catch. Still, a system that is likely to miss infractions is cause for alarm. Students want tests to be fair, and they don’t want to compete against people who game the system. Unfortunately, it’s easy for students to feel they are at a disadvantage due to poor online proctoring tools, webcam-only solutions included.

Human proctors have been seen as reliable enough to ensure integrity in the classroom for centuries. But online learning is different. Webcams provide only a small window into what each student is doing, and there are countless creative ways to try to gain an advantage using off-screen resources. When tasked with overseeing multiple students, human proctors often can’t keep track of everything happening on screen either, leaving the door open for infractions. As a result, online proctoring tools with webcam-only monitoring cannot be relied on to provide a high-quality assessment experience.

Compromised Privacy

Online proctoring tools with webcams introduce serious privacy concerns. Who is watching me? Where is this footage going? How is it being used? Is it being sold? These are the types of questions that students are asking themselves—and their institutions.

Today’s students often feel comfortable sharing images and videos of themselves online with friends, family, and even strangers. But the idea of a proctoring company recording video of them is different, especially when they don’t know who is watching, exactly how the video will be used, or how secure it is.

Adding AI to the Student Assessment Experience

Online proctoring tools that combine webcam functionality with AI technology offer an innovative way to address the frustrations that come from using webcams alone. When a solution uses AI paired with the oversight of student advocates, an enhanced and less anxious experience is created.

With Rosalyn’s innovative student assessment experience, purpose-built AI algorithms monitor each exam session and flag any potential infractions. Flagged events are then evaluated by student advocates to ensure the veracity of the events flagged by the AI. Students can be assured that there is no person watching them throughout the exam. Instead, student advocates are only involved when absolutely necessary. We also focus on transparent data collection and usage policies that comply with privacy protection laws and follow best practices for cybersecurity to protect sensitive student data.

This student-centered approach:

  • Limits interaction between the student advocate and test-taker.
  • Deters and detects potential infractions.
  • Reduces bias.
  • Relieves student anxiety about someone watching them throughout the test-testking process.

As a result, students can perform at their best, trust in the results, and know their data is protected.

This AI-driven student assessment solution also benefits institutions. There is no doubt that human wisdom adds value to the proctoring experience. But webcam-only proctoring can be impractical, expensive, and unsustainable. With an event-based humain-in-the-loop system, you retain the value of human insight in a practical, affordable, and scalable way.

Giving Students What They Deserve

Students need to feel that they can trust the exam experience and know the student assessment solution is there to support them. A state-of-the-art technology built around student needs addresses students' frustrations with webcam-only proctoring while also helping students have the educational experience they deserve.

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