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This page is being updated daily in response to the current situation.
Everyone should wash their hands or use hand sanitiser before coming to class and frequently throughout the day. Avoid touching other people. Avoid touching your face as much as possible. Cough or sneeze into your elbow or a clean tissue that you put straight into the bin. Clean frequently touched surfaces, including equipment, regularly with detergent and water, an alcohol-based cleaning solution or disinfectant. Currently the Commonwealth government health guideline on social distancing recommends 1.5 m as the distance that anyone should stay away from others, so that could be seen as a reasonable guideline for seating. Current advice for venues is one person per 4 sq m.
Anyone who is unwell with respiratory symptoms should stay home until they have recovered, and students should be assured that they will not be penalised for staying home when unwell. (Normal special consideration processes apply to students who miss expected activities.) But don’t assume everyone who coughs, sneezes or blows their nose in a class is sick, some might just have allergies.
Yes, you can find recorded sessions on our page for workshops and events designed to support staff with the impact of Covid-19.
Yes. It’s now April 14.
Last day to enrol in a subject is now 30 March
Census date is now 14 April, the last day to withdraw from a subject.
Teaching resumes Tuesday 24 March extending Autumn session by one week, now ending through to 12 June – thus replacing Final Stuvac with week 12.
There will be no StuVac at the end of session.
Exam weeks (13-27 June) remain the same.
A revised academic calendar will be circulated shortly.
Please note a communication is being prepared to explain the reasons for this decision to students.
Yes, you can set up an online quiz with an ‘essay’ type question in Canvas, allowing students to provide long-form text answers (in a given time frame). You’re welcome to drop by the LX.lab or book a remote consultation if you have any specific questions around the set up.
View our guide on assessment and academic integrity for advice on how to support students being assessed online along with alternative assessment options. Note that it may not be necessary to change the assessment, it may be possible to conduct exams online. The information also provides a guide to ensure that students understand and practice academic integrity in all their course work and assessments.
As outlined on the Social Distancing in learning and teaching page, changes to the assessment after teaching has commenced are covered under Rule 3.7.4. Under this rule, changes can occur if they are reasonable in all the circumstances, submitted to and approved by the RAO and confirmed in writing by the Subject Coordinator to all students. This means that changes are limited by what might be considered reasonable.
Here are some criteria that you could use to assess this (and please note that the list is not exhaustive):
Yes, if the above criteria are met and your RAO agrees.
You could use contributions to discussion board topics. If you do this, give very clear instructions to guide expectations (and manage the workload for students and staff).
Think carefully about how you will assess the participation without overloading the assessor(s). Keep the criteria clear and simple, and ideally adapt your current criteria rather than developing others (especially if you’re assessing the same learning outcomes). Suggestions include:
For individual presentations, you can use Zoom with the same time limits as expected in the original face-to-face class, or ask students to record their presentation on video and submit it. If you choose the latter and the criteria relates to the content of the presentation and students’ communication skills, make it clear to students that you will not be judging the quality of their video recording and they should not need to edit it.
You can use Zoom for group presentations. Student groups will need to have prepared in advance and sequenced the speakers in their presentation (which is usually what happens in class anyway). In the presenting group, one of the group members should share their screen if they are using visuals. Presenting group members can have their video on, with all other students having their video off, or you can just use audio for all students. Optionally, non-presenting students can ask questions via chat and the presenting group can answer a selection verbally after their presentation. A separate online form can be used for peer feedback.
We recommend using Zoom as a replacement for smaller classes where there’s lots of interactivity (typically tutorials and seminars). We suggest:
Start by viewing our media guide on how to convert content to video. This covers preparation, recording, and distribution to ensure all students can access your materials.
In addition, it’s important that your audio and video content is captioned for accessibility reasons. Our Kaltura captioning guide provides instructions on how to do so using machine-captioning as a basis.
The whiteboard function works best if you have a touch screen with a stylus, either a tablet or touch screen PC. If your tablet is connected you can share that with your participants via the sharing options. It does work with using your mouse but it can be a bit tricky if you don’t have much experience. You can also use the ‘type’ function on the Zoom whiteboard if you want your writing to be very clear.
To learn more about the Whiteboard option in Zoom, view our resource on communicating with students during a Zoom meeting.
For individual presentations, you can use Zoom with the same time limits as expected in the original face-to-face class, or ask students to do their presentation on video and submit it. If you choose the latter and the criteria relate to the content of the presentation and students’ communication skills, make it clear to students that you will not be judging the quality of their video recording and they should not edit it.
For group presentations, student groups will need to have prepared in advance and sequenced the speakers in their presentation (which is usually what happens in class anyway). You can still use Zoom. In the presenting group, one of the group members should share their screen if they are using visuals. Presenting group members can have their video on, with all other students having their video off, or you can just use audio for all students.
Yes it is possible. Do you normally record them if they’re done in class? If you don’t, then just assess them while watching as you normally do. It’s less time consuming than re-watching them!
All UTS staff and students have access to Zoom and Microsoft Teams.
Check out our Student guide to Zoom which you can share with your students.
These resources, developed in close consultation with faculties, IML, LX and SAU Exams provides information on each type of exam to create consistency across the university.
Yes, there is no change to the 13-27 June exam period. Exam alternatives such as take-home exams will still need to be centrally timetabled to manage clashes.
Yes, students have been informed that their results will be available on Monday 13 July 2020 in MyStudentAdmin as planned.
There will be no on-campus exam facilities available this session unless this has been arranged as a special exam provision through SAU exams. Students are being offered ability to sit exams online so that they can progress their studies safely. Students who do not sit their exam will need to apply for a Special Consideration and should consider the impact this may have on the progression of their degree.
While teaching is likely to continue online into Spring session, a final decision is yet to be confirmed about online exams after Autumn 2020.
Questions can be imported into Blackboard using a specially formatted spreadsheet. Many question types are supported but questions and answers may only be entered in plain text, with further editing required in almost all cases. Blackboard can also import/export questions from another Blackboard site. Generally, it is best practice build within the LMS rather than upload due to number of issues around formatting.
Canvas has no ability to upload questions unless they have been previously exported from another LMS, a Canvas site or provided by a publisher in QTI file format. Please read the documentation on importing questions into Canvas carefully before importing files from another Canvas site as it is possible to accidentally overwrite existing questions or leave out questions in a quiz (if sourced from a question bank).
IMPORTANT: Any imports should be reviewed extensively to ensure that all fields have been imported successfully.
Take-home exams are often open-book exams where students have the flexibility to complete the task over an extended period of time. This requires some thought to work well – for information and tips on designing a take-home exam, see this blog post.
Yes, you can create multiple choice questions as part of your invigilated exam, however we recommend building these as question pools (Blackboard) or banks (Canvas) and using randomisation question pools so that individual student exams are different. This means that information cannot be passed from early test takers to later test takers. Please see the resource on remote assessment and academic integrity for more information.
In some cases, Zoom or Teams may be appropriate tools for assessing tasks or presentations. However, we do not recommend staff use Zoom or Teams to custom design invigilation scenarios in their subjects.
The LX.lab can advise subject coordinators on how to implement their modified assessments. Book a remote consultation or contact the LX.lab at LX.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Subject Coordinators have been asked to limit access to exam sites to only Subject Assessors and Faculty Admin to protect exam integrity. After the exam period is over, staff can be re added if it is a subject requirement.
Subject coordinators will need to rethink their exam for online format and input into Canvas or Blackboard. General guidelines are provided online via the UTS LX site. To ensure academic integrity, any final exams should currently only exist on paper and not on the LMS (Canvas/Blackboard).
No, exam masters are not required by SAU Exams this Autumn 2020 session as exams will be run online. Quality assurance will be managed by each faculty. Subject assessors, together with subject coordinators will need to review the exam for errors prior to the exam being entered into LMS.
Subject assessors will need to work closely with subject coordinators to determine the suitability of exams for online delivery, as well as the clarity and accuracy of those exams before they are input into LMS.
Yes, to avoid potential clashes for students during exam period, any take-home exams will need to be centrally timetabled.
As normal, exams greater than 2 hours require Provost approval. If you already have approval to run a 3-hour exam you do not need to seek additional approval.
For secure invigilated exams, it is recommended that these be no longer than 90 minutes. For online exams without invigilation, these should be no longer than the usual 2 hours to complete exam. Additional time can be allowed to provide students time to adjust to the online exam environment, but the time to complete actual exam workload should not exceed the 2 hours (unless it is one of the already approved 3-hour exams).
Providing a longer window of time that students can sit the exam will allow students greater flexibility for when to complete the exam.
We have provided suggested guidelines around each of the online exam types here, including minimum number of hours.
The decision regarding invigilation was faculty based, with consideration for certification requirements and learning objectives by exam type. For the majority of subjects this session, it was possible to replace with alternative take-home exams or LMS exams without invigilation. Very few final exams will be invigilated as a result.
AI invigilation is where the AI software ‘launches’ the online exam for students and monitors them. After the exam, a trained supervisor (from ProctorU) then reviews the recording and any issues flagged by the AI software are provided to UTS for final review.
Live invigilation is where a human supervisor ‘launches’ the online exam for students and supervises them, with the support of an always-on artificial intelligence (AI). The supervisor can provide immediate assistance if there are any technical issues.
No. All invigilated exams this session are run via the LMS using ProctorU to ensure that the academic requirements of the assessment are met. We are not recommending that staff use tools such as Zoom or Teams to run their own modified invigilation of exams or tests. These tools can, however, still be used effectively as part of other kinds of assessment tasks (e.g. presentations or group work).
To sit an invigilated exam, the student will need to provide ProctorU with access to the computer’s camera. The student will share their photo ID on camera and the ID is used in conjunction with biometric facial recognition software to authenticate their identity (similar to how you use your face to unlock a phone).
To sit an online invigilated exam, students will need:
During an AI or live invigilated exam, any behaviour that may signal a breach of academic integrity will be flagged as an issue. This is to provide a fair and equal exam environment for all students. These actions include:
Similar to an on-campus exam, students’ mobile phones and other electronic devices (e.g iPads, tablets, smart watches) must be turned off and stored out of reach. Watches (except smart watches) should be removed and placed on the desk or in a bag. Clear plastic bottled water, which is the only drink permitted in the exam room, should be placed on the floor.
Items prohibited in an online invigilated exam include:
It is suggested that Subject Coordinators provide students with a list of items that are permitted in the exam as this may differ between subjects.
Students sitting an online invigilated exam will have two opportunities to make sure that they are prepared:
Unless an approved exam provision with Accessibility, students will be unable to take toilet breaks during an online invigilated exam as they will be moving outside the view of the proctor. We recommend students have gone to the bathroom before they start their exam.
If a student requires frequent bathroom breaks due to any medical/health condition, please encourage them to register with the Accessibility Service by emailing Accessibility@uts.edu.au or call on 9514 1177.
No, multiple monitors/displays are not permitted. Students will need to disconnect any additional monitors prior to their invigilated exam.
The Library has a limited number of laptops that they loan to students for 24 hours. Students need to complete a collection request.
To avoid any potential delay in having access to the equipment students need, they are encouraged to borrow or purchase a webcam as soon as possible and apply for reimbursement via the Student Support package. If a student has an urgent financial situation, they should contact SSU reception on 02 9514 1177 and ask for a financial assistance appointment.
It is up to the Subject Coordinator to elect what resources are permitted in an exam environment. For an invigilated exam, Subject Coordinators can choose from the different types of calculators permitted:
A mobile calculator is not permitted in invigilated exams as ProctorU will be unable to verify what other information may be accessed using those devices.
Student privacy is just as important to UTS as it is our students.
Students will naturally have questions as online exams are new to them. Here are a few points you can share in your correspondence with students.
There are several layers of protection in place to ensure the privacy of student data, governed and administered under Australian law. Students’ rights are protected through the contractual arrangement between UTS and ProctorU.
UTS retains control over all identifiable student data collected during the examination process.
Transparency is important to us. UTS is asking students to consent to consent to supplying personal information for the purpose of verification prior to creating an account with ProctorU. This is so students have the chance to be fully informed about the ProctorU process rather than just asking you to sign up.
Students are being asked to visit MyStudentAdmin first to find out more information about supply of personal information before consenting.
Students who do not provide their consent may not be able to sit their exam during the exam period, and should consider the impact that this has on the progression of their degree. Providing personal information is voluntary, but it’s important to know that because of the current social restrictions, UTS won’t be able to offer exams on campus this session.
Yes, Proctors will have the ability to view the screen and utilise the mouse and keyboard as if they were sitting next to the student. To do this, students will need to download and run a remote support application called LogMeIn Rescue. Students will need to provide explicit approval before the proctor can perform these actions.
Proctors will guide students through the launch of exam, identity verification and scans of their environment to ensure there are no unapproved materials.
Once the exam starts, the Proctor will monitor everything on the computer screen, but can no longer utilise the mouse and keyboard.
LX Resources have advice on how to manage assessment and academic integrity challenges in the online environment. We encourage you to review that resource which can be found here.
During an AI invigilated exam, the exam session is recorded and monitored by ProctorU’s AI (artificial intelligence) software. The recording is then reviewed by ProctorU trained Proctors and any flagged incidents during the session are reported to UTS. Proctors are trained to flag unusual behaviours such as lighting changes, unusual noises, leaving the view of the screen or consistently looking down to look at something. If a student is looking around while they are thinking and it does not appear to be suspicious, it is unlikely the behaviour would be flagged. Even if the behaviour is flagged, only UTS decides if it is misconduct.
For a live invigilated exam or an AI invigilated exam, the software being used prevents screenshots or copy-pasting. The supervisor or AI software will also identify any actions like using a phone to take photos.
No, in an invigilated exam, students are not allowed to touch their phones or any other devices (unless they are explicitly allowed by the Subject Coordinator as a permitted resource). Phones are always prohibited. The screenshot hotkey is also disabled by default by the ProctorU software
Students should try to reconnect and resume their exam. Should a student experience technical difficulties beyond their control during an online exam then they can apply for Special Consideration within 2 days after the exam.
As part of this application process suitable documentary evidence will need to be provided including a Stat Dec covering:
Examples of documentary evidence include:
Instructions on what students need to do are available via the ‘Exams’ page on UTS website. Students have also been notified via the UTS Insider student e-newsletter and UTS social media channels when instructions are available.
Students also have access to the following guides, checklists and articles:
Academics should be available by email at minimum for the first hour, and last hour of the exam window.
We strongly suggest you provide clear information to students prior to their exam about the times you will be available and how you will be contactable.
We suggest the available window of time that students can sit exams to be as wide as possible to allow for increased flexibility in case of technical issues. It is also recommended that you are available for the first and last hour of the exam to assist with any student related access or submission issues.
Students who have invigilated exams as part of their subjects will be able to access support via invigilation tool in real time.
There is a dedicated online exams hotline supported by the UTS IT Support Centre (ITSC) that can assist students with any technical issues they experience. Call +61 2 9514 3222 at any of the following times:
SAU Exams team will manage requests for alternative and rescheduled exams as per the usual centrally conducted process. The period for alternative and supplementary exams have been combined and will occur in the week of 20-24 July 2020.
No, subject coordinators only need to create a main and alternative paper at this stage for Autumn session 2020. Where necessary, the SAU Exams team will advise subject coordinators should a rescheduled and supplementary paper be required. To reduce the need for rescheduled papers, we suggest exams be open for a longer timeframe.
Individual student conditions can be found through existing exam adjustment and provision channels for centrally conducted and faculty-based exams. Processes for implementing conditions that can and cannot be managed online for final exams are being developed.
No, to assist Subject Coordinators the Exams team will set up accessibility conditions for individual students with special provisions for Autumn session 2020 . This includes additional time, breaks etc. To do this, Subject Coordinators need to have created the ‘shell’ of final exam in subject site by 29 May to allow Exams team sufficient time. Only the placeholder or shell of draft quiz/exam is required by 29 May, not the exam content which can be included later (the suggested date for exam content to be finalised is the week commencing 8 June).
To help the Exams team identify the exam site, please ensure the exam is named ‘Final Exam – Subject Code – Autumn Session 2020’ so that the Exams team can clearly identify it. Subject Coordinators will also need to set the ‘availability date’ so that the exam isn’t visible before scheduled start time and date to anyone other than Subject Assessor or Faculty Admin. If unsure, please do not publish exam and seek assistance from your faculty learning and teaching team in first instance, or contact the Lx.lab for a remote consultation.
If the change from on-campus in person exams to online exams has raised access issues for your students, they may be eligible to apply for Exam provisions. The Accessibility Service can provide support and advice for students with a wide range of conditions such as learning disabilities (e.g. dyslexia/ADHD), anxiety/depression, vision, hearing and physical disabilities. Exam Provisions aim to accommodate the impact of a disability and/or ongoing medical condition while maintaining academic standards, and include adjustments such as extra time, additional breaks, or applications for a rescheduled exam after the main exam period. Students can make an application or seek support via an Accessibility Consultant and can contact Student Services Unit Reception 61 2 95141177 or email Accessibility@uts.edu.au.
If your concern isn’t addressed here, please contact us with your question so we can assist you and add to these FAQs. You can email us anytime at Covid-L&Ttech@uts.edu.au.
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