Secure Your Assessments with Our Respondus LockDown Browser App

Contributed By

Dylan Rodgers

Content Strategy Manager and Editor in Chief of the Schoology Exchange

Secure Your Assessments with Our Respondus LockDown Browser App

Posted in Schoology | February 02, 2016

What do you do while your students are taking a test online? Do you walk around checking their computer screens to make sure they aren't looking up the answers on Wikipedia or copying and pasting their answers into your essay questions?

The rapid influx of online technologies in education has had countless benefits, but assessing student understanding has, in some ways, become more challenging due to unbridled access to information during tests. But as of today, we have an answer to that. 

Introducing the Respondus Lockdown Browser for Schoology Enterprise Only

The Respondus LockDown Browser (LDB) is a custom browser that instructors can use to lock down their testing environment in Schoology. This means students cannot search the internet, access other applications, or do anything else that might undermine the integrity of your assessment.

 

 

Above is the student view of a Schoology quiz with Respondus enabled. Notice the simplified navigation in the top left corner. Everything is stripped away to ensure the student is doing exactly what they should be—taking your assessment.

You don't have to walk around your classroom looking over your students' shoulders to see what they are doing. You know. In fact, you can even utilize the LDB's webcam capabilities to see the thoughtful face of students taking your tests or quizzes at home sick or via your virtual class.

How to Get Started Using the Respondus LockDown Browser

First, you must purchase a Respondus LDB license in order to configure the app. If your institution has a subscription, you’ll need your customer key and shared secret that Respondus provided to you. If you have them already, then you can simply download the Respondus app from our App Center, input your credentials, and get started.

Once the app is configured, you'll have access to the Respondus LockDown Browser Dashboard where all your tests and quizzes in Schoology will appear. This dashboard enables you to turn on the LDB for individual assessments and customize the settings for each one.

 

 

A few of the advanced settings you have available are:

  • Lock Students into the Browser Until the Exam is Completed—this simply ensures students cannot leave the assessment without completing it. There are times when you may not want this turned on.
  • Allow Students to Access this Exam with Screen Readers—students who use screen reading software can use it during the test.
  • Enable the Calculator on the Toolbar—provides students a simple digital calculator for use during the test.
  • Enable Printing from the Toolbar—provides students an option to print the test after they open it.

One thing to note is that the Respondus app and the browser are different. The app is your dashboard (mentioned above) and the browser is what students must download in order to take the exams. Instructors, you may want to also download the browser in order to preview your tests and quizzes in which the LDB is enabled.

The Respondus LDB integration does not extend to our mobile apps yet.

How Students Take Assessments on the LockDown Browser

When you've enabled the LDB, your students can simply open the test or quiz as they normally would in Schoology. If they have the LDB downloaded on their device, then clicking the Begin Test/Quiz button will automatically launch the assessment in the browser.

For those students who haven't downloaded it yet, they will be prompted to do so before beginning the assessment. This all happens on the backend so students continue to have a seamless experience within Schoology.

 

 

That's the gist of our Respondus LockDown Browser app. Make sure to check out our step by step help guide on this app for all the details you'll need to use it effectively.

Also, we'd love to hear your thoughts. If you have a Respondus subcription download it via our App Center, try it out, and let us know what you think right here on the blog or via Twitter (@Schoology). And if you need help after reading our guide, reach out to our Support Team for assistance.

 

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