Mintra has introduced new anti-fraud security to its elearning courses to further enhance the integrity of the online examination process. eProctoring - the remote invigilation of assessments using a webcam and monitoring software – is now available as a cost-effective and viable alternative to face-to-face proctoring in a training centre setting.
The technology monitors for potentially suspicious activity during the assessment process - for example another person being present or additional web browsers being opened – in an effort to detect and prevent candidate cheating.
When candidates log in to a course assessment, they go through a registration process where a number of still images of their face are taken by the webcam. They are then presented with guidelines about the type of activities that may trigger a red flag, such as very low lighting which makes it difficult to see what is happening, detection of background conversations and the webcam having a limited view of the room
Any activity that the software determines as being suspicious is logged and the filmed assessment is then reviewed before a decision is taken on whether the candidate should pass or fail on the grounds of potential fraud. Employers are advised of the outcome and have the right of appeal should they disagree with the determination.
The use of remote proctoring has increased significantly since the global Covid-19 pandemic led to widespread closures of classrooms and training centres where invigilators would normally oversee the examination process. Research suggests that half of the institutions (54%) are currently using online or remote proctoring services and another 23% are planning or considering using them.
eProctoring complements the identity verification (IDV) functionality launched by Mintra earlier this year. That solution uses biometric face matching to cross-check a webcam image with a form of photographic identity, which gives an assurance that the person on screen is the candidate who should be taking the test.
Paul Munro, Mintra group innovation director
Paul Munro, group innovation director, said eproctoring offered an effective anti-fraud solution to employers and standards bodies requiring heightened security of online assessments. He added: “Our customers see the future of training as digital, but some have concerns about potential loopholes for cheating when exams are not taken at a training centre in the presence of an invigilator.
“Our clients operate in sectors where it is essential that employees can develop and demonstrate their knowledge to ensure safe operations, so we understand how important it is to support them in closing those loopholes. eProctoring gives our customers high-level assurance on the integrity of the process so they can feel confident that safety is not being compromised.
“The eproctoring functionality has the added benefit of being extremely cost-effective with a reduction in time and resource because there is no requirement to factor in staff and travel costs associated with a training centre model. It is far more convenient as candidates can simply log on from their PC or laptop in any location.”
In addition to IDV, Mintra is also able to provide clients with an enhanced level of security through 360 monitoring. The latter involves monitoring through two cameras – one on the PC or laptop and the other on a mobile device - to provide a better view of candidates and their environment.
Paul said that eproctoring does not require clients to install new software or modules to Trainingportal – Mintra’s learning and competency management system on which online assessments are performed.
He explained: “Our eproctoring solution is less intrusive than, for example, Teams or Zoom. Nothing needs to be installed on PC, as the proctoring is done through a web browser. Images taken during the assessment are collected stored in line with our GDPR policy.”
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