MIT Technology Review: Software That Monitors Students During Tests Perpetuates Inequality and Violates Their Privacy, by Shea Swauger (University of Colorado Denver):
The coronavirus pandemic created a surge in demand for exam proctoring tools. Here’s why universities should stop using them.
The coronavirus pandemic has been a boon for the test proctoring industry. About half a dozen companies in the US claim their software can accurately detect and prevent cheating in online tests. Examity, HonorLock, Proctorio, ProctorU, Respondus and others have rapidly grown since colleges and universities switched to remote classes.
While there’s no official tally, it’s reasonable to say that millions of algorithmically proctored tests are happening every month around the world. Proctorio told the New York Times in May that business had increased by 900% during the first few months of the pandemic, to the point where the company proctored 2.5 million tests worldwide in April alone.
I'm a university librarian and I've seen the impacts of these systems up close. My own employer, the University of Colorado Denver, has a contract with Proctorio.
It’s become clear to me that algorithmic proctoring is a modern surveillance technology that reinforces white supremacy, sexism, ableism, and transphobia. The use of these tools is an invasion of students’ privacy and, often, a civil rights violation. ...
Technology didn’t invent the conditions for cheating and it won’t be what stops it. The best thing we in higher education can do is to start with the radical idea of trusting students. Let’s choose compassion over surveillance.