Tips for taking an Online Test

We are coming up to the end of the semester and I just wanted to share some best practices when it comes time to take an online test.

The following tips will help you prepare yourself and your computer for taking a test in Blackboard. While this information is not guaranteed to prevent all technical issues, you can minimize your chance of experiencing a problem if you employ the tips below.

Before You Begin

  • Take your test in a quiet area that is free from distractions.
  • Set aside enough time to complete the test.  Do not wait until the last minute.  Plan enough time to contact your instructor if anything goes wrong.
  • Allow yourself plenty of time before the closing time of the test.  If you enter the test ten minutes before the closing time, you will be locked out.
  • Use a computer plugged in directly to your internet router.  Do not use a wireless or satellite connection if possible.
  • We recommend using Firefox to take all tests.

During the Test

  • Do not double-click any of the buttons in the test. Blackboard uses single-clicks only. Double-clicking will not make the server process your request faster – it will only cause you to get kicked out.
  • Once you have entered the test, do not click the “back” button on your browser or other areas on the screen.
  • Read the Test Instructions section at the top of the test. This area tells you the time limit (if any), how many attempts you are allowed, and if you are able to backtrack (for one-at-a-time question presentation).
  • If your test is presented one question at a time, do NOT click the “back” button on your browser to go to a previous question.  If backtracking is allowed, the test will provide a button to go to previous question.
  • Use the scroll wheel on your mouse as little as possible, or find a mouse that does not have a scroll wheel.  If you scroll the wheel right after clicking an answer choice, you may inadvertently change your answer on a question.  Click the answer choice and then click some blank space on the page to make sure your answer choice was marked correctly.
  • Do not rush through the test and click several buttons at once. Always wait for your browser’s status bar to say “done” whenever you click a button to move to another question or save your answers.
  • Do not switch between multiple windows or tabs, or open other programs. If your instructor allows you to use your notes, print them out before taking the test.
  • If all the questions are presented at once, save your answers every 15 minutes.

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