In order to continue to offer online testing services to as many faculty and students as possible we are introducing the following guidelines for testing center utilization. It is likely that these guidelines, perhaps with minor changes, will continue.
- Any instructor wishing to use the Online Testing Center for in-term exams, quizzes, and or final exams must make their request to the Center by no later than the Friday before classes start. Instructors will need to register their course and basic exam information prior to this date (See our page on steps-for-instructors-regarding-exams-and-homework). Late requests should be made to the Associate Provost for Academic Programs and may not be approved.
- Instructors of classes with enrollment larger than 50 students are expected to limit the number of attempts allowed for final exams to a maximum of 3, and are encouraged to strongly consider a limit of 2.
- Time allowed to complete an exam once started: Midterm and/or unit exams and quizzes shall not exceed 75 minutes, final exams are not to exceed 120 minutes. These limits will need to be enforced using the delivery software. In the case of Blackboard exams, the test option “Set Timer” should be set to 75 minutes or less and the “Auto Submit” option should be set to “on”. Students needing additional time as verified by Student Disability Resources (SDR) staff should be accommodated through the SDR office by using the Exam Accommodation Referral Form. (Note: the Blackboard test options allow for the inclusion of “Test Availability Exceptions” that make it possible to provide these students with additional time.) Faculty using the Testing Center to administer written (pencil and paper) exams for distance/off-campus education sections (XW,XE….) will also need to adhere to the time restrictions noted above.
Exam window of time available to students.
- Except as noted below exams must be available to students for a period of time not less than three business days and not exceed 8 business days. Three to five business days of availability is recommended. Exams should not end on a Saturday or Sunday.
- Courses with enrollments of 400 to 600 students should divide the course into “sections” of 200-300 students. Courses with enrollment in excess of 600 should divide the course into “sections” of 300 to 400 students. Each section should be assigned a two to three day window of time to complete the exam. Windows of time for sections may overlap provided that each section starts and ends on a different day and as noted:
- Two day window -> one day overlap
- Three day window -> one or two day overlap
- Dates for mid-term exams must be coordinated with the Testing Center to avoid multiple large exams on the same dates.
- It is likely that some course exams will be required to utilize a specific testing location to facilitate load balancing of all testing centers.
- Dead Week – No midterm/unit exams or quizzes may open later than noon on Wednesday of Dead Week and must not end later than 5pm on the Friday of Dead Week.
- Finals Week – Final exams may not open prior to the Saturday after Dead Week and should not end prior to the time as is listed in the Final Exam Schedule.
Basic exam information includes exam name, release and end dates and times, exam type (Blackboard or written), and password if delivered online.
David K. Holger
Associate Provost for Academic Programs and
Dean of the Graduate College
Professor of Aerospace Engineering
1550 Beardshear Hall
Iowa State University
Ames, IA 50011-2021