Online Classes: What professors can really see

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More than half of all classes for the fall 2020 semester have been taught online. As a result, professors have used a variety of different software programs to deliver their classes online. These programs offer professors a number of ways to view student activity.  

One of the most common websites used by professors is HuskyCT. UConn uses Blackboard as the platform for their Learning Management System, or LMS. All classes have a HuskyCT page, which is built on Blackboard.  

On Blackboard, professors have a myriad of options to view what a student is doing. Using the analytics system, a professor can see when a student started an assignment, how long it took a student to complete it, and how much time a student spent on each question, among other statistics. 

Blackboard’s video capture system is called Kaltura. Many professors use Kaltura as a way to record and share lectures. This program’s video analytics also allow professors to view when and for how long a student is watching a lecture.  

Respondus Lockdown Browser is another commonly used software. This is a program which films students as they take exams. This allows professors to see a student taking an exam as they would in a classroom. 

Lockdown Browser is often used with Respondus Monitor, a feature which uses video analysis to flag when students are cheating. This feature tracks where students are looking during exams as well.  

ProcterU is another similar test-taking software used by some professors. Like Respondus Lockdown Browser, ProctorU allows a professor to see a recording of a student taking a test, as well as any “flags” for cheating. These may include looking away from the screen or having another person in view of the webcam.  

It should be mentioned that the software discussed is compliant with the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, or FERPA. 

More information about privacy at UConn can be found at privacy.uconn.edu.  

Thumbnail photo courtesy of Grzegorz Walczak on Unsplash.com

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