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Business, government and academic bodies all making the transition to remote online assessments

TRUMBULL, CT USA — June 2, 2020 — Since the lockdown has made face-to-face testing impossible, many organizations have instead turned to remote online assessments, which deliver exam conditions at a distance, to assess their people. 

Questionmark, the online assessment provider, has seen a 30% year-on-year increase during April and May, delivering more than three million assessments over the cloud.

John Kleeman, Founder and Executive Director of Questionmark said: “Training outfits are moving online and they need post-course tests.  Universities and colleges are giving exams to students at home.  Certification tests, previously taken at test centers, are now being taken online.”

Like any change in approach, success lies in clear objectives and good planning.  Here are ten steps to help ensure a smooth transition to remote assessments.

  1. Plan well. Preparation is key. Map out what tests will cover and how they will work.
  2. Deliver from the Cloud. It’s the most practical, scalable and reliable approach.
  3. Use a provider that can deal with connectivity losses. Ensure answers are stored as the test progresses so there is no need to start again, if there’s a failure. 
  4. Pilot. Run a real trial with real test takers on a small scale before moving to large scale.
  5. If you can, stagger start times. Modern systems are built for volume, but it’s usually sensible to not to start thousands of test takers at exactly the same time.
  6. Work in partnership with test takers. Be transparent with test takers about the process.    
  7. Also work in partnership with your test delivery company. Listen to your vendor and help them listen and learn from you.
  8. Use a secure platform. Use a specialist assessment platform, not an LMS, check its security certifications and implement additional steps according to the risks and stakes.
  9. Be proportional in your balance between security and privacy. Respect the privacy of test takers, especially when at home.
  10. Validity, reliability, fairness. All tests should aspire to be valid (measure what’s intended), reliable (consistently measured) and be fair (don’t disadvantage test takers for reasons irrelevant to the test).

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