Every Monday this fall, we’re covering how schools are using technology during the pandemic, because Monday mornings are just harder now. It’s not only teaching that’s happening remotely for millions of students — it’s testing, too. And many colleges are using software to watch students take those tests.
Big providers include Respondus, ProctorU and Proctorio. Some of them use webcams to track how often students move their heads or eyes or touch the keyboard. Anything out of the ordinary is flagged for teachers to review. I spoke with Todd Feathers, who recently co-wrote a piece about a “rebellion” against this kind of surveillance for Motherboard. One concern: false positives. The following is an edited transcript of our conversation.
Todd Feathers: Once you start the exam, there are all kinds of environmental factors that can lead to false positives. If you’re a parent who has a child in the room, you’re