Digitally Enhanced Testing at UW-Madison

UW-Madison is committed to advancing the Wisconsin Experience – the total student experience – by supporting student-centered learning environments. High-quality, evidenced-based assessment practices including exams, assignments, projects and presentations, are fundamental to evaluating and supporting students. There is currently a growing need for digital tools that better support assessments and student learning in both residential and online environments, while continuing to ensure quality, accessibility and integrity.

To address this campus need, UW-Madison’s Sub-Committee on Digitally Enhanced Testing will explore, recommend and help implement a suite of technology enhanced student testing services including:

  • Digital tools to securely administer online exams to students in-person, on campus
  • Digital tools to securely administer online exams remotely to students in online/distance education courses
  • Software to help students prepare and submit original work

Proposed Timeline

  • Fall 2018-Spring 2019 – Meet with and gather input from campus stakeholders
  • Early Spring – Goal: Submit RFP for digital tools to securely administer online exams (for both in-person and remote scenarios)
  • Early Summer – Goal: Review and select digital tool(s) to securely administer online exams from RFP submission
  • Fall 2019 – Goal: New digital tool(s) to securely administer online exams available to select UW-Madison instructors/courses
  • Spring 2020 – Goal: Continue to expand the availability of, and support for, the digital tool(s)

Example Use-Case Scenarios

The following are common campus scenarios that demonstrate the need for digital tools that better support assessments and student learning in both residential and online environments.

This is an accordion element with a series of buttons that open and close related content panels.

Scenario 1: Online exam provided to students in-person

Students are physically present in an on-campus classroom proctored by a course instructor or by staff in a testing space and are taking an exam online in Canvas. In this scenario, monitoring needs to ensure that students are not using the digital device to access unauthorized websites or run unapproved software. This may also include “locking-down” the digital device so that sharing content and transmitting the test to a printer or an unauthorized site does not occur. This scenario may vary in terms of course size and testing space needs (e.g. large lecture hall, ability to plug in a laptop, stadium seating and active learning spaces).

Scenario 2: Online exam provided to students remotely

Students are taking an exam online in Canvas remotely, in a self-controlled space, on a laptop equipped with a webcam. Monitoring in this scenario needs to ensure that each student taking the exam is the same student enrolled in the course, and that the students are not using additional digital devices or unauthorized materials to complete the exam.

Scenario 3: Ensuring originality of student work

Students are asked to write a paper and submit it through Canvas. In this scenario, students may be submitting an individual assignment, an aspect of a team project, presentation or other written summative assessments within the course. To better support student success in this scenario, it would be beneficial to have a tool that students could use to check their own work and ensure the originality of their thoughts and ideas, as well as proper citations. The tool would also provide an easy and useful way for instructors to help ensure the originality of all student work.

Sub-Committee on Digitally Enhanced Testing

The sub-committee was appointed by the vice provost for teaching and learning and the UW-Madison Teaching and Learning Technology Advisory Group (TLTAG).

  • Paul Oliphant, Wisconsin School of Business (co-chair)
  • John Ford, DoIT Academic Technology (co-chair)
  • Mo Bischof, Office of the Provost
  • John Booske, Wisconsin Collaboratory for Enhanced Learning (WisCEL)
  • Chris Hopp, DoIT
  • Mary Thompson, Division of Continuing Studies
  • James A. Wollack, Office of Testing and Evaluation Services, School of Education

Contacts

Paul Oliphant
Sub-Committee on Digitally Enhanced Testing Co-Chair,
Wisconsin School of Business
paul.oliphant@wisc.edu

John Ford
Sub-Committee on Digitally Enhanced Testing Co-Chair,
DoIT Academic Technology
john.ford@wisc.edu