Cheating is as old as the concept of exams itself. People looking for unfair means to pass exams devise new ways to pull it off. For tests and exams conducted in a regular classroom setting, invigilators provide a level of deterrence against cheating. However, such hands-on invigilation is not achievable in online exams, which makes them more vulnerable to instances of cheating.
The integrity and quality of a test, which is prone to the use of unfair means, gets affected for multiple reasons.
Cheating leads to an incorrect assessment of the aptitude: It’s not possible to rightly assess the aptitude of candidates, if there is a significant room for cheating in the test.
Cheating spoils level playing field: When some people are scoring higher than others by exploiting unfair means, it is not possible to uphold the value of the test.
If your online testing protocols are vulnerable to exploitations, then sooner or later students will avoid using your educational and learning services.
As mentioned earlier, it is fairly easy to rig online quizzes and exams. Therefore, a proactive approach is necessary to deter cheating in all such virtual exercises.
It is imperative to have your online quiz devised in different question formats. It’s easy to cheat for true-false questions as compared to fill-in-the-blanks and multiple choice questions. So, make sure your quiz is a mix and match of different question formats. You can find online examination software applications that allow the facility to create different types of multiple choice questions. One can also minimize the chances of cheating by making the questions more ‘interactive’ i.e. use audio, video, and pictures instead of simple text.
Laziness in compiling online quizzes might make them more vulnerable to cheating. So, don’t use established question banks to create online quizzes. It’s easier and quicker to find answers to questions that might have already been used in some other quiz. Nevertheless, you can get help from them to work out your own questions. By playing with the options of multiple choice questions, you can increase the deterrence against cheating.
Your choice of examination software and test maker is also vital in creating a cheat-proof quiz. Always pick the platform that offers built-in features to prevent cheating. For example, you can find online examination software applications that notify the quiz maker if any of the contestants try to copy and paste anything. Similarly, they also detect if participants take a screenshot of the test panel. They also prevent participants from logging in through multiple accounts at the same time.
All these built-in measures will certainly deter deceitful participants from answering the questions by using unfair means. Ruling out the ways of cheating from your online testing mechanism is essential whether you are conducting online quizzes as part of your online education program or hiring people through them.