Preventing Cheating on Online Tests
Proctor360 has developed a headset that enables test takers to take any exam from their home or office.
By attaching a microphone, speaker, and 360-degree camera, the company’s patent-pending headset enables test administrators to view a person’s entire testing environment, communicate with them, and be alert for any signs of cheating.
With its system, Proctor360 is targeting three growing markets:
1. The $91 billion global e-learning market.
2. The $42 billion global computer-based testing market.
3. The $60 million U.S. remote proctoring market.
Online proctoring, the process of monitoring tests and exams administered over the Internet, is becoming increasingly popular in the areas of education and workforce certification.
This process offers students and professionals the opportunity to take tests remotely in comfortable, familiar environments.
The problem is that current online proctoring platforms lack the proper security measures to prevent cheating.
Some remote testing platforms, for example, use single camera technology to monitor test takers. But many students and professionals have learned to exploit a system that has a limited field of view.
In fact, in a recent study by Online School Center, a website publishing news and information on education, 33% of students admitted to cheating on online exams.
In short, there are many unanswered questions related to the security, fairness, and content protection of exams administered online. And as a result of these questions, many companies and colleges are apprehensive about moving to online testing.
Proctor360’s headset provides a solution to these limitations. The company’s headset uses a 360-degree camera to gain a complete view of a testing space, and includes a microphone and speaker for communication between the test taker and the proctor. The system can be used for web- or paper-based exams.
Here’s how the system works:
Schools or employers make their exams available through Proctor360.com, and students and professionals sign up for tests on the website.
Once signed up, they receive a headset in order to take the exam. The tests are administered via a secure web browser. And coupled with the headset and computer camera, the proctor can view multiple angles of a testing environment. All data is fed live to the proctor and recorded for review.
Once the test taker has completed the exam, he or she sends the headset back to Proctor360, while the proctor approves the test.
Proctor360 offers three levels of security for its exams: low, medium, and high.
- Low-security tests use just the computer webcam, and are an option for testing that may not need strict monitoring.
- Medium-security tests use the headset to record exams for later review. A proctor will watch the footage at a later time and verify that no cheating has occurred.
- And high-security tests enable the proctor to use the headset to monitor exams live.
The cost of administering an exam ranges between $15 and $35, depending on the test’s level of security, and the company generates average revenue of $25 per test.
The average customer life span for Proctor360 is between 1 to 4 years, as the primary customer base is college students.
Proctor360 launched in May 2018. Since then, the company has made significant progress, for example:
- The company has designed a working prototype of its headset and applied for a patent on it.
- It has started gauging the interest of multiple universities and companies working in the testing field.
- And Proctor360 is in negotiations with ProV, a company offering online assessments through secure, electronic test delivery. Under this potential partnership, Proctor360 would license its headsets for ProV’s testing needs.
Moving forward, the company plans to add partnerships in order to generate more revenue. This includes relationships with companies where headsets would complement software they’ve developed, and schools that could use Proctor360 as the primary means of monitoring testing.
As a result of these potential partnerships, the company is forecasting $2 million in revenue in 2019.
Long-term, Proctor360 plans to develop its own testing software. Ideally, this platform will use Artificial Intelligence to automatically recognize cheating.
The company’s team has more than 50 years of proctoring experience. Perhaps surprisingly, the proctoring industry is experiencing growing M&A activity.
For example, in April 2018, Examity, a company serving the online testing market, acquired B Virtual, a company providing online proctoring services to academic and government institutions.
Ganga has extensive experience in the proctoring industry, including owning and operating multiple proctoring centers.
Before starting Proctor360, he spent 10 years as Director of GIT Services, a company providing training courses and exam proctoring services.
For four years, he was an IT consultant for Merit Medical Systems (NASDAQ: MMSI), a company specializing in manufacturing medical devices.
Ganga previously served as a project manager for APR Ltd., a professional recruitment and human resources company.
He earned a degree in Engineering from Indian Institute of Technology and received a “mini-MBA” from the University of Richmond.
Don previously founded ProctorU, which became one of the leading proctor servicing companies in the world. At its peak, the company was five times larger than its closest competitor, and had nearly 600 employees.
He was formerly Vice President of Sales for Questionmark, a software company providing data and analytics to tech-related businesses.
For five years, he was President and Chief Operating Officer for Andrew Jackson University, a for-profit, accredited university offering bachelor’s and master’s degrees in areas including business, public policy, and criminal justice.
Don was previously a Professor of Economics at San Jose State University, where he earned a Master’s degree in that field.
Kranthi works with his father, Ganga, and is Proctor360's Chief Technology Officer.
He has a strong technology background, with skills in the areas of 3D modeling, 3D printing, and data/image analysis.
He was formerly a researcher at Cellular Biomechanics Research Lab, affiliated with Virginia Commonwealth University. In addition, he served as a design engineer for SpherIngenics, a startup focused on developing technologies for stem cell research.
Kranthi earned a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Biomedical Engineering from VCU.