Assessment, like all other aspects of teaching, needs to be adapted to work in a virtual course environment. If you traditionally rely on closed-book, in-class exams in your courses, you may want to think about proctoring software like Proctorio—or, given concerns about student privacy and bandwidth demands raised by this kind of software, you might want to consider alternatives to traditional testing approaches. We outline some options below and also in our Academic Integrity Alternatives to Proctoring Software page, which is focused on ways of ensuring academic integrity without the use of proctoring software.

Online Tests/Exams

If you are conducting online Tests/Exams, consider rewriting exams with questions that are more “ungoogleable” and explicitly make exams open book/open source. 

Tips for crafting questions: 

  1. Ask students to cross-reference information.  For example, how does what we learned in unit A interact with or inform unit B? 
  2. Students have to defend a previous position they’ve taken in the course (i.e. refer back to previous assignments they’ve submitted). 

Here are some considerations for Tests/Exams in Canvas:

  • Canvas offers a timer option to set a time limit for students taking a test online. However, it is important to note that internet connectivity issues on the student side can cause premature submission and/or an incorrect rendering of time spent on the test. For this reason, we urge caution using the timer on Canvas exams.
  • If relevant for your exam context, you can consider using Proctorio, a proctoring solution integrated with Canvas, to monitor students taking a test at a distance. 

Alternatives to Test/Exams

Consider assigning a project such as: 

  • Students generate their own questions for the test and provide the answer key
  • Students design case studies which could be used by practitioners in the relevant field 
  • Students write a paper and engage in peer review
  • Students create a multimedia presentation to share synchronously or asynchronously

In Canvas, consider using the following for student submissions:

  • Turnitin for written submissions (plagiarism detection solution integrated with Canvas assignments)
  • Zoom  (GU Zoom support site) for presentations or brief explanations of work
  • Panopto (GU Panopto support site) for recorded presentations
  • VoiceThread (GU Tools & Services site) for asynchronous presentations by students and instructor with multiple feedback options
  • Pages in Canvas with student editing access using the Rich Content Editor (Canvas Community site)
  • Webcam video recording via Rich Content Editor *(Canvas Community site) in Discussion boards

Other Resources