Online exams: exploring student experience and integrity behaviours as we return to campus




online exams, proctoring, integrity, exam experience, cheating


On campus activity is resuming following two years of working and studying at home. Institutions are now faced with the opportunity and challenge of reconnecting students with an on campus environment while retaining the flexibility of online learning and assessment.

During the pandemic there was a large uptake in the use of online remote exams combined with a variety of assessment security measures including proctoring tools designed to monitor student behaviour. Scholars and commentators alike have reported on positive and negative effects of these online assessment and security measures (Coghlan et al., 2021; Harwell, 2020; Selwyn et al., 2021; Stewart, 2020; White, 2020; Zhou, 2020).  In particular, online proctoring technologies have been reported by some scholars to improve academic integrity behaviours (Dawson, 2020; Dendir & Maxwell, 2020; Dyer et al., 2020; Gudiño Paredes et al., 2021; Hylton et al., 2016) while others have reported less favourable results impacting the broader student experience. For example, online exams have been shown to impact student satisfaction with their online exam experience (Dawson, 2020; Gudiño Paredes et al., 2021; Harwell, 2020; Jaap et al., 2021) and academic performance (Dendir & Maxwell, 2020; Lee & Fanguy, 2022; Milone et al., 2017).

As students return to campus, institutions are faced with the dilemma of deciding what online assessment practices should be retained, adapted, or discarded. This Pecha Kucha reports on a comparison of off campus and on campus student experiences of online exams and assessment security measures including online proctoring.

This Pecha Kucha will report on one of Australia’s largest university-wide student exam experience surveys. Our large dataset comprising over 12,000 total responses will reveal preliminary findings of student experience during Semester 2 2021 where students mostly completed online exams remotely at home, compared to student experience during Semester 1 2022 where students mostly completed online exams on-campus. Overall, proctoring conditions between the two teaching periods are relatively comparable, with the major difference being that for the on-campus held exams in Semester 1 2022, students were required to check-in at a physical booth and receive a wristband with QR reader allowing them subsequently check-in to the exam room where they then used their own device to complete the online exam.

This study offers unique student perspectives and has allowed us to understand the impact of the varied proctoring and exam conditions on student satisfaction and wellbeing, as well as on academic integrity attitudes such as temptation to cheat and self-reported cheating behaviours. In keeping with the conference ‘reconnect’ theme we focus on comparing the online exam experience of students who have returned to campus with the experience of students who sat an online exam remotely in a private setting. In particular, we explore their satisfaction, preference, perceived academic performance, as well as their motivations and behaviours in relation to (not)cheating.

This Pecha Kucha offers actionable insights in relation to the implementation of online exams and online proctoring for student who are studying off campus, but also for those who are returning to campus.






ASCILITE Conference - Pecha Kuchas