Students at every education level are struggling to adapt to remote learning as the coronavirus pandemic continues. For many students, exam proctoring and “anti-cheating” software is one of many challenges of extended online classes. One college student went viral after detailing her experience with remote test-taking and ProctorU, which resulted in cheating accusations and a failed exam.
In her TikTok, the student said that ProctorU Review+ — the exam proctoring program used by her university — flagged her behavior as suspicious. Her “suspicious” behavior was her reading questions out loud for better reading comprehension.
ProctorU Review+ is described as an “end-to-end recording solution with artificial intelligence, professional review, and incident reporting.” It’s designed to detect and investigate “suspicious behavior” from students. Unfortunately, it led to the student’s professor giving her a zero on the exam.
The student, who goes by Dana Jo on TikTok, said, “Just to let you know how online school and college is going, I just took an exam that I studied really, really hard for, and I got a B on it. And it’s a pretty difficult exam, so a B is pretty good.”
“My professor is giving me a zero, because the Review+ said I was talking when I was just, like, re-reading the question so I could better understand it,” she tearfully explains. According to Dana, the professor had also placed an infraction on her academic record, which jeopardized the scholarships she relies on to pay rent and tuition.
Battling ProctorU Cheating Accusations
The ProctorU software— even the Review+ version— is harmful and invasive to students. pic.twitter.com/YsqampMZco— Devon Cantwell (@devon_cantwell) September 30, 2020
Insider reports that Dana’s initial video racked up three million views within a week. Many commenters expressed support for Dana Jo and slammed her professor. Others shared their own frustrations with proctoring services, such as ProctorU. The original TikTok is now deleted but was reuploaded multiple times by other users.
Dana also uploaded (and now deleted) a series of follow-up TikToks, according to Insider. In them, she explained that she set up an appointment with the dean of students. She contacted ProctorU for video footage of her taking the exam, allowing her to take the parts that were flagged to show the dean.
According to Dana, the dean told her it was “pretty clear” she studied and deserved the grade. However, she faced the possibility of having to retake the exam, depending on her professor’s decision.
Fortunately, she was able to speak with her professor, who explained that she was on high alert after catching four students attempting to take an exam together. Her professor apologized, gave Dana her grade from the initial exam, and removed the infraction from her record.