Faculty Information Sheet for Administering Online Tests

Part I: Test Room Specific Precautions

If you have scheduled an online test/exam, please do the following:

For a Computer Lab

Send an Email to [email protected] with a request to have an IT specialist prepare the Lab for the exam.

The IT specialist assigned will depend on where the exam will take place. Please see Appendix (i) for more details.

For a Classroom

Please bear in mind that for tests administered in the classroom, you will have to rely on the operability of the students’ laptops. You are advised to hold online examinations in a lab environment to safeguard against limitations inherent within our wireless networks. To make sure the test goes as smoothly as possible, request the students to pay a visit to the school’s laptop service center so that a consultant can do the following:

  • Check wireless connectivity.
  • Install and update the LockDown browser.
  • Perform a check-up to guarantee browser performance.

For a list of IT service centers at the various campus Buildings: Please see Appendix (ii)  for more details.

Part II: iLearn Test Preparation

  • Keep "Force Completion" unchecked when setting the test options.
  • To minimize cheating you should consider randomizing the test questions and/or using Random Blocks or Question Sets.
  • Password-protect the test and provide the password to students only when they are ready to take the test. This is done in the Test Options, or if you are using Respondus Lockdown Browser, use the Respondus Lockdown Browser tool in Course Tools.
  • Limit the date and time availability of the test. It is best to limit the time to the first 15 minutes of the test so that a student doesn’t leave the test and inform other students of the password.
  • Set the question presentation mode to “one question at a time”.
  • Limit the test to fifty questions or less.
  • If you plan to use iLearn for the first time, have the students take a trial exam first.
  • Be prepared: Have a backup plan. Consider paper copies of the exam (with Scranton sheets if necessary) or an alternate testing location and date.

Part III: Online Exam Administration in the Classroom

When students are coming in:

  • Ask the students to leave all their personal belongings at the head of the classroom and to leave their mobile devices, in silent mode, on the instructor’s desk. Enforce a penalty for attempting the test while having possession of a cell phone.
  • If possible, do not allow anyone sit at the last row in the class room: Moving around and observing from the back of the class will be easier. Alternatively, consider asking all students to rotate and face the back of the class to give you enough room at the front to observe all screens.
  • If the exam does not employ the LockDown Browser, then make sure to tell students that the only application/window that should be running is the browser and any other open application will result in a disciplinary or academic penalty.

Beginning the exam:

  • Make sure that all the students are logged in to the PC and have launched the test page on an Internet Browser or LockDown browser, and then provide them the password to the test; some instructors prefer to write the password on the whiteboard.
  • Stagger starting time to reduce the load on the servers. This is critically important during finals as many tests might be starting at the same time.
  • After everyone present has logged in to the test, go back to the test options and change the password, or if you are using Respondus Lockdown Browser use the Respondus Lockdown Browser tool under Course Tools. Do not announce the new password. If a student arrives late, you may manually enter the new password for him or her. 

During the examination:

  • Tell students to interact with the test by single clicks, double clicking might cause problems.
  • Monitor test via iLearn Grade Center. Viewing the Grade Center shows what tests are active and indicates when the test is completed. This will allow an instructor to view how many students are taking the exam and help in determining if all students have started the exam. Refresh the Grade Center page to get the most recent test progress information.

As students finish up:

  • Make sure that a student has completed an exam and that the attempt or grade has shown up on the instructor’s Grade Center before allowing that student to leave the room.

Part IV: Common iLearn Errors

Case One:

The Red Error! This error happens when students are clicking too quickly. Before the system has a chance to respond to the first click, the students click again (even on the same button) and the system gets confused. To prevent this, students need patience while taking an exam.

When this appears, there will be two option buttons:

     CANCEL and LOGIN. 

     Click on CANCEL and the student may resume the exam.


If the Login button was clicked, a proctor must

  • Click on the “I” button.
  • Click on the Proctor Options button, then enter the proctor’s exit password.

If “Force Completion” was not checked on the exam (see Part II) the student can re-enter the exam and resume where they left off.

If “Force Completion“ was checked on the exam options, then a new attempt at the exam may be undertaken if the exam attempt is cleared from grade center (the uncompleted attempt is erased), or if the instructor allows multiple attempts.

 Case Two: System Hangs

Occasionally the system doesn’t respond to a request to move from page to page. If the system hangs for a more than 30 seconds, just click on the Refresh Button. Everything should work normally after that.