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Study.com and ProctorU Questions
#11
(02-04-2019, 07:16 AM)fork Wrote: No it won't help. I did that and the first thing I had to do after starting with ProctorU was enter the administrator password. So, the things they are running require admin level access.

It makes sense since I believe all those remote desktop apps require admin permissions in order to tap into the display drivers and such to mirror your desktop environment over the wire.
In Progress: MBA (IT Management), Western Governors University (31/35cu | Sep 2019)
Up Next: Perhaps an MSCS or a DBA/DM/Ph.D.

Complete:
BSBA in Computer Information Systems, 2019, Thomas Edison State University
ASNSM in Computer Science, 2019, Thomas Edison State University

B&M CC: 8.68cr, TESU: 3cr, CLEP/DSST: 15cr, Study.com: 57cr, Straighterline: 19cr, ALEKS: 9cr, TEEX: 6cr, The Institutes: 2cr, Sophia: 2cr
(121.68 credits total. 95 credits earned in 10 months, with 45 of those earned in ~3 months)
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#12
The only files the proctors should have access to are your system files - a biggie - and perhaps the "users" and "programs" folders, any subdirectories and perhaps any roots folders. Ok, that's actually a lot of access.  

If you have a personal directory which you want to keep spying eyes out of, make a back-up copy of the entire contents of the folder and validate your back-up.   After backing up and validating, lockdown the folder by changing the folder's permissions.  If you're using Windows, you can modify permissions by highlighting the folder & right clicking, then select properties, then the security tab.  Don't make changes unless you have backed up and have a thorough understanding of the process and recovery.  You could lock yourself completely out that folder, which is why you want to back-up and validate you have access to those files and sub-directories.
Robin
Member since 2008

~ Slowly collecting credits from a variety of sources. Almost finished with my baccalaureate degree.
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#13
ProctorU is just using a standard desktop sharing application. If they are accessing your files, you'd see them moving your mouse and clicking on things to do so. They cannot download/upload or access any files in the background or use your network connection in any way other than for hosting the remote desktop session. Other than the batch file that gets run at the start to look for virtual machines, everything else they do is manual.

For example, when they want to verify you don't have any illegal programs running they look at your taskbar and right click to close any apps they think may be in violation (though they have shut off people's antivirus in some cases, which one needs to be watchful for). When checking to see that you don't have a second monitor active, they open your control panel display properties and look to see if it shows a second monitor. They also ask permission before they take control of your mouse to do anything.

I'd be more concerned about RPnow since they are using their own custom client which can do anything it wants without you knowing it. At least with ProctorU you know what they can do because its using standard software. If you look at their FAQ they also show what they can/will do, and if you find that they've done anything beyond this, that would be a legal issue for them.

That said, any app could be corrupted with malware, so its always good to have a good antivirus/antimalware app running on your machine in case that happens. It's not foolproof, but for most people, that should be good enough.

Personally, I consider proctor apps to be a minor security issue and probably not worth worrying about for most college students. Those who need more strict security measures for one reason or another will usually know that they do and will know what they need to do in order to protect themselves.

IMO, if you're in a position where you have sensitive or top secret data on your computer or local network that you're super concerned about, then you probably shouldn't be using that computer or network to take these tests. In such a case, you should use a dedicated laptop or computer that has a fresh OS image on it and doesn't have secure network access, or take your tests at the library, using a library computer (I know some libraries will allow this, though you may need to bring your own webcam). If you're super paranoid you can also restore your test-taking computer with a fresh OS after each session, though if this is all you use it for, then that shouldn't matter.
In Progress: MBA (IT Management), Western Governors University (31/35cu | Sep 2019)
Up Next: Perhaps an MSCS or a DBA/DM/Ph.D.

Complete:
BSBA in Computer Information Systems, 2019, Thomas Edison State University
ASNSM in Computer Science, 2019, Thomas Edison State University

B&M CC: 8.68cr, TESU: 3cr, CLEP/DSST: 15cr, Study.com: 57cr, Straighterline: 19cr, ALEKS: 9cr, TEEX: 6cr, The Institutes: 2cr, Sophia: 2cr
(121.68 credits total. 95 credits earned in 10 months, with 45 of those earned in ~3 months)
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#14
(02-04-2019, 08:00 PM)Merlin Wrote: ProctorU is just using a standard desktop sharing application. If they are accessing your files, you'd see them moving your mouse and clicking on things to do so. They cannot download/upload or access any files in the background or use your network connection in any way other than for hosting the remote desktop session. Other than the batch file that gets run at the start to look for virtual machines, everything else they do is manual.

For example, when they want to verify you don't have any illegal programs running they look at your taskbar and right click to close any apps they think may be in violation (though they have shut off people's antivirus in some cases, which one needs to be watchful for). When checking to see that you don't have a second monitor active, they open your control panel display properties and look to see if it shows a second monitor. They also ask permission before they take control of your mouse to do anything.

I'd be more concerned about RPnow since they are using their own custom client which can do anything it wants without you knowing it. At least with ProctorU you know what they can do because its using standard software. If you look at their FAQ they also show what they can/will do, and if you find that they've done anything beyond this, that would be a legal issue for them.

That said, any app could be corrupted with malware, so its always good to have a good antivirus/antimalware app running on your machine in case that happens. It's not foolproof, but for most people, that should be good enough.

Personally, I consider proctor apps to be a minor security issue and probably not worth worrying about for most college students. Those who need more strict security measures for one reason or another will usually know that they do and will know what they need to do in order to protect themselves.

IMO, if you're in a position where you have sensitive or top secret data on your computer or local network that you're super concerned about, then you probably shouldn't be using that computer or network to take these tests. In such a case, you should use a dedicated laptop or computer that has a fresh OS image on it and doesn't have secure network access, or take your tests at the library, using a library computer (I know some libraries will allow this, though you may need to bring your own webcam). If you're super paranoid you can also restore your test-taking computer with a fresh OS after each session, though if this is all you use it for, then that shouldn't matter.

Great points Merlin.  For sensitive data, I was thinking more along the lines of my family photos (especially my kids) and patient forms I have saved to my drive-hard over the years along with a variety of miscellaneous files which have personal info that no one, other than my family, should see.

Not to hijack this thread, as I hope my question supplements the conversation: which education venues use which proctoring service - other than study.com using ProctorU?  I know this has been asked and answered in the past, however, things seem to change over time. 

TIA!
Robin
Member since 2008

~ Slowly collecting credits from a variety of sources. Almost finished with my baccalaureate degree.
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#15
Saylor uses Proctor U, as does TESU for their TECEPs. Study.com uses RP Now, which does not have a live proctor monitoring you. It records you for them to review later.
TESU BALS-Psych. + ASNSM(Math): 124 Cr.

TEEX(6): Cybersecurity 101/201/301
The Institutes(2): Ethics
Sophia(2): Essentials of Managing Conflict, Dev. Effective Teams
NFA(1): Comm. Safety Edu.
GED(10): NAS-131, SOC-273, MAT-121, HUM-101 (1)
Study.com(75): Intro to Psych., Soc. Psych.-1, Growth & Dev. Psych., Personality Psych., History & Systems of Psych., Org. Theory, Library Science, Comm. at Workplace, Intro to World Religion, I/O Psychology, Ethics in Social Sciences, Org. Comm., Eng. 104, Eng. 105, History of Vietnam war, Special Ed. History & Law, Differentiated Ed., Classroom Management, Foundations of Ed., Abnormal Psych., Research methods in Psych., College Math, Intro. to Geometry., Calculus (6).
Saylor (15): Intro. to Molecular & Cellular Biology, Comparative Politics, Corporate Comm., Env. Ethics, Principles of Comm. 
TESU (1): Cornerstone, Lib. 495 Capstone.
CSM (3): Quant. reasoning. 
Aleks (6): Trigonometry, Intro to Statistics. 
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#16
(02-04-2019, 10:06 PM)Supermind Wrote: Saylor uses Proctor U, as does TESU for their TECEPs. Study.com uses RP Now, which does not have a live proctor monitoring you. It records you for them to review later.

I am disappointed to hear this as I plan on taking some courses with Study.com soon. I thought the one benefit of a live proctor is if an issue (technical or otherwise) pops up then you can reason with the proctor in the context of that situation. Now I have to wait on pins-and-needles for who knows how long after my exam just to get a "soft score"? At least with a live proctor if they do not have any objections during the time it takes you to finish the exam then it would be safe to assume that your "soft score" is valid.

Now, with no proctor there in real time you have no idea if there are any objections since the video will be viewed by who knows who at a later time. Did a family member of yours accidentally cough or make noise in the other room? You get real time feed back from a live proctor if they have an objection, now,who knows?
[87 Credits Earned Total]
TESU BSBA-CIS {81 of 120 SH Completed}
TESU ASNSM-Computer Science {55 of 61 SH Completed}
TESU ASBA {42 of 60 SH Completed}
-----------------------------------------------------
Free Credits: TEEX Cybersecurity (6cr) NFA (1cr) Insurance Ethics 312 (2cr) Sophia DE Teams & EOM Conflict (2cr)

ALEKS: College Algebra (3cr)

SOPHIA: Psychology(3cr) Sociology(3cr) Human Biology(3cr) Intro to Information Technology(3cr)
Statistics(3cr) Macroeconomics(3cr) Microeconomics(3cr) English Composition I (3cr) Visual Communications(3cr)
Art History I(3cr) Environmental Science(3cr) Student Success(1cr) Accounting(3cr) Project Management(3cr) Ethics(3cr)
Ancient Greek Philosophers(3cr) Approaches to Studying Religions(3cr) US History I(3cr) US History II(3cr)

STUDY.COM: COM120(3cr) CS109(3cr) CS102(3cr) CS103(3cr) CS303(3cr UL) ENG105(3cr)     

currently working on: Study.com BUS101: Principles of Management
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#17
(02-05-2019, 12:09 AM)AwardTour Wrote:
(02-04-2019, 10:06 PM)Supermind Wrote: Saylor uses Proctor U, as does TESU for their TECEPs. Study.com uses RP Now, which does not have a live proctor monitoring you. It records you for them to review later.

I am disappointed to hear this as I plan on taking some courses with Study.com soon. I thought the one benefit of a live proctor is if an issue (technical or otherwise) pops up then you can reason with the proctor in the context of that situation. Now I have to wait on pins-and-needles for who knows how long after my exam just to get a "soft score"? At least with a live proctor if they do not have any objections during the time it takes you to finish the exam then it would be safe to assume that your "soft score" is valid.

Now, with no proctor there in real time you have no idea if there are any objections since the video will be viewed by who knows who at a later time. Did a family member of yours accidentally cough or make noise in the other room? You get real time feed back from a live proctor if they have an objection, now,who knows?

Yes, it can be a bit annoying to have to wait a week or two for confirmation that your exam score is final, but its also a very simple, straightforward, and stress-free proctoring process. After the first few, you get used to the delay. Sometimes they surprise you and review the video in a few days, but it usually takes between a week and a week and a half.

With ProctorU one of the biggest issues is dealing with the proctor, sometimes they're late or have unreasonable demands, etc. It always seems to take at least 15-20 minutes to get everything squared away before I can even begin to take my exam. With RPnow the setup takes maybe 5 minutes and then you're free to take your test.

I was nervous the first couple tests with RPnow for the reasons you mention, but I took 20 courses through Study.com using RPnow and didn't have a single issue pop up with any of them. If you follow the setup directions, meet the proctored testing environment requirements and academic integrity requirements, and only utilize materials that are allowed for the test, you should be fine.

Once I got over the initial nervousness from doing this kind of proctoring, the only worry I had after that was technical; like if the internet connection dropped or there was a power failure or something. Luckily, neither happened during a test for me. As for remedies, if you lose internet connection and reconnect within a few minutes you'll usually be fine; the system will continue to record and will upload it all when the connection comes back. If you lose power you will probably have to contact RPnow support to see if you can reconnect or if you have to reschedule... your school may lock you out once you start a test session.
In Progress: MBA (IT Management), Western Governors University (31/35cu | Sep 2019)
Up Next: Perhaps an MSCS or a DBA/DM/Ph.D.

Complete:
BSBA in Computer Information Systems, 2019, Thomas Edison State University
ASNSM in Computer Science, 2019, Thomas Edison State University

B&M CC: 8.68cr, TESU: 3cr, CLEP/DSST: 15cr, Study.com: 57cr, Straighterline: 19cr, ALEKS: 9cr, TEEX: 6cr, The Institutes: 2cr, Sophia: 2cr
(121.68 credits total. 95 credits earned in 10 months, with 45 of those earned in ~3 months)
[-] The following 1 user Likes Merlin's post:
  • AwardTour
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#18
(02-05-2019, 12:09 AM)AwardTour Wrote:
(02-04-2019, 10:06 PM)Supermind Wrote: Saylor uses Proctor U, as does TESU for their TECEPs. Study.com uses RP Now, which does not have a live proctor monitoring you. It records you for them to review later.

I am disappointed to hear this as I plan on taking some courses with Study.com soon. I thought the one benefit of a live proctor is if an issue (technical or otherwise) pops up then you can reason with the proctor in the context of that situation. Now I have to wait on pins-and-needles for who knows how long after my exam just to get a "soft score"? At least with a live proctor if they do not have any objections during the time it takes you to finish the exam then it would be safe to assume that your "soft score" is valid.

Now, with no proctor there in real time you have no idea if there are any objections since the video will be viewed by who knows who at a later time. Did a family member of yours accidentally cough or make noise in the other room? You get real time feed back from a live proctor if they have an objection, now,who knows?

I have taken several courses with study.com, and I don’t see an issue with RP Now. Just make sure your work table and the space around it, is clear of all papers, books, electronic devices etc. The room should be well lit, so your face is clearly visible the entire duration. Consider having a table lamp to light up your face, if necessary. Make sure you photograph your ID clearly. If it is not clear, they write back asking for a scanned copy to be sent over email. It happened only once for me. My passport number was not very clear on the image; so they asked me to send them a clearer image. And do not turn your gaze away from the screen, unless you are taking a math test and need to do calculations on a sheet of paper. This is so they don’t suspect you are engaging in some act of fraud. Apart from these, I see no reason to feel anxious about their responses. Yes, they take some time to post your final grades. But at the end of each test, you see how many questions you got right. So, you can calculate what your final grade would be. No anxiety about failing the test.
TESU BALS-Psych. + ASNSM(Math): 124 Cr.

TEEX(6): Cybersecurity 101/201/301
The Institutes(2): Ethics
Sophia(2): Essentials of Managing Conflict, Dev. Effective Teams
NFA(1): Comm. Safety Edu.
GED(10): NAS-131, SOC-273, MAT-121, HUM-101 (1)
Study.com(75): Intro to Psych., Soc. Psych.-1, Growth & Dev. Psych., Personality Psych., History & Systems of Psych., Org. Theory, Library Science, Comm. at Workplace, Intro to World Religion, I/O Psychology, Ethics in Social Sciences, Org. Comm., Eng. 104, Eng. 105, History of Vietnam war, Special Ed. History & Law, Differentiated Ed., Classroom Management, Foundations of Ed., Abnormal Psych., Research methods in Psych., College Math, Intro. to Geometry., Calculus (6).
Saylor (15): Intro. to Molecular & Cellular Biology, Comparative Politics, Corporate Comm., Env. Ethics, Principles of Comm. 
TESU (1): Cornerstone, Lib. 495 Capstone.
CSM (3): Quant. reasoning. 
Aleks (6): Trigonometry, Intro to Statistics. 
[-] The following 1 user Likes Supermind's post:
  • AwardTour
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#19
(02-05-2019, 05:21 AM)Supermind Wrote:
(02-05-2019, 12:09 AM)AwardTour Wrote:
(02-04-2019, 10:06 PM)Supermind Wrote: Saylor uses Proctor U, as does TESU for their TECEPs. Study.com uses RP Now, which does not have a live proctor monitoring you. It records you for them to review later.

I am disappointed to hear this as I plan on taking some courses with Study.com soon. I thought the one benefit of a live proctor is if an issue (technical or otherwise) pops up then you can reason with the proctor in the context of that situation. Now I have to wait on pins-and-needles for who knows how long after my exam just to get a "soft score"? At least with a live proctor if they do not have any objections during the time it takes you to finish the exam then it would be safe to assume that your "soft score" is valid.

Now, with no proctor there in real time you have no idea if there are any objections since the video will be viewed by who knows who at a later time. Did a family member of yours accidentally cough or make noise in the other room? You get real time feed back from a live proctor if they have an objection, now,who knows?

I have taken several courses with study.com, and I don’t see an issue with RP Now. Just make sure your work table and the space around it, is clear of all papers, books, electronic devices etc. The room should be well lit, so your face is clearly visible the entire duration. Consider having a table lamp to light up your face, if necessary. Make sure you photograph your ID clearly. If it is not clear, they write back asking for a scanned copy to be sent over email. It happened only once for me. My passport number was not very clear on the image; so they asked me to send them a clearer image. And do not turn your gaze away from the screen, unless you are taking a math test and need to do calculations on a sheet of paper. This is so they don’t suspect you are engaging in some act of fraud. Apart from these, I see no reason to feel anxious about their responses. Yes, they take some time to post your final grades. But at the end of each test, you see how many questions you got right. So, you can calculate what your final grade would be. No anxiety about failing the test.
That is good advice, I have never heard that about gazing away from the screen. I will try to avoid doing that. Thank you for telling me.
[87 Credits Earned Total]
TESU BSBA-CIS {81 of 120 SH Completed}
TESU ASNSM-Computer Science {55 of 61 SH Completed}
TESU ASBA {42 of 60 SH Completed}
-----------------------------------------------------
Free Credits: TEEX Cybersecurity (6cr) NFA (1cr) Insurance Ethics 312 (2cr) Sophia DE Teams & EOM Conflict (2cr)

ALEKS: College Algebra (3cr)

SOPHIA: Psychology(3cr) Sociology(3cr) Human Biology(3cr) Intro to Information Technology(3cr)
Statistics(3cr) Macroeconomics(3cr) Microeconomics(3cr) English Composition I (3cr) Visual Communications(3cr)
Art History I(3cr) Environmental Science(3cr) Student Success(1cr) Accounting(3cr) Project Management(3cr) Ethics(3cr)
Ancient Greek Philosophers(3cr) Approaches to Studying Religions(3cr) US History I(3cr) US History II(3cr)

STUDY.COM: COM120(3cr) CS109(3cr) CS102(3cr) CS103(3cr) CS303(3cr UL) ENG105(3cr)     

currently working on: Study.com BUS101: Principles of Management
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#20
(02-05-2019, 05:46 AM)AwardTour Wrote:
(02-05-2019, 05:21 AM)Supermind Wrote:
(02-05-2019, 12:09 AM)AwardTour Wrote:
(02-04-2019, 10:06 PM)Supermind Wrote: Saylor uses Proctor U, as does TESU for their TECEPs. Study.com uses RP Now, which does not have a live proctor monitoring you. It records you for them to review later.

I am disappointed to hear this as I plan on taking some courses with Study.com soon. I thought the one benefit of a live proctor is if an issue (technical or otherwise) pops up then you can reason with the proctor in the context of that situation. Now I have to wait on pins-and-needles for who knows how long after my exam just to get a "soft score"? At least with a live proctor if they do not have any objections during the time it takes you to finish the exam then it would be safe to assume that your "soft score" is valid.

Now, with no proctor there in real time you have no idea if there are any objections since the video will be viewed by who knows who at a later time. Did a family member of yours accidentally cough or make noise in the other room? You get real time feed back from a live proctor if they have an objection, now,who knows?

I have taken several courses with study.com, and I don’t see an issue with RP Now. Just make sure your work table and the space around it, is clear of all papers, books, electronic devices etc. The room should be well lit, so your face is clearly visible the entire duration. Consider having a table lamp to light up your face, if necessary. Make sure you photograph your ID clearly. If it is not clear, they write back asking for a scanned copy to be sent over email. It happened only once for me. My passport number was not very clear on the image; so they asked me to send them a clearer image. And do not turn your gaze away from the screen, unless you are taking a math test and need to do calculations on a sheet of paper. This is so they don’t suspect you are engaging in some act of fraud. Apart from these, I see no reason to feel anxious about their responses. Yes, they take some time to post your final grades. But at the end of each test, you see how many questions you got right. So, you can calculate what your final grade would be. No anxiety about failing the test.

That is good advice, I have never heard that about gazing away from the screen. I will try to avoid doing that. Thank you for telling me.

Yeah, not all proctors will have a problem with this, but some do. This also applies when you need to use your scratch paper (whiteboard for WGU) or a calculator, make sure it is in front of you rather than to the side, I was warned about that once. As far as I know, this isn't actually a requirement, but its a good recommendation to reduce the chance that they might flag you.

The same goes for not talking to yourself while taking the test... this is something I have to be careful about as I tend to think out loud (like when I'm having a problem understanding a question, for example). I was also warned about that once early on, so I try to keep my self-dialogue internal or in whispers now.

Certainly don't do them both at the same time! Smile
In Progress: MBA (IT Management), Western Governors University (31/35cu | Sep 2019)
Up Next: Perhaps an MSCS or a DBA/DM/Ph.D.

Complete:
BSBA in Computer Information Systems, 2019, Thomas Edison State University
ASNSM in Computer Science, 2019, Thomas Edison State University

B&M CC: 8.68cr, TESU: 3cr, CLEP/DSST: 15cr, Study.com: 57cr, Straighterline: 19cr, ALEKS: 9cr, TEEX: 6cr, The Institutes: 2cr, Sophia: 2cr
(121.68 credits total. 95 credits earned in 10 months, with 45 of those earned in ~3 months)
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