Schools receive help from Proctorio in detecting fraud when students take an exam online. The student is checked to see whether his/her attention is still on the screen. If that is not the case, you may need to look at a textbook.
Colleges and universities started using the software due to the corona pandemic. It soon came to light that the software discriminated. Dark faces are not properly recognized. Students with a dark skin color are more likely to be identified as fraudsters.
Student at the Vrije Universiteit (VU) Robin Pocornie went to the Netherlands Institute for Human Rights last October because she was concerned about possible discrimination. The student was not discriminated against by the software based on her skin color, but the supervisor pointed out that this did happen in other cases.
That is why twelve higher education institutions were asked whether they still use Proctorio. Schools can also use the program for entrance exams or for students doing an internship abroad.
Proctorio is not used in secondary vocational education. Eight colleges and universities still do this. Naomi Appelman of the Racism and Technology Center finds this incomprehensible. Together with the VU student, the foundation went to the Netherlands Institute for Human Rights. “These institutions do not care that students of color are less able to follow education,” says Appelman.
Four educational institutions now no longer use Proctorio. Radboud University stopped using the software because of the discrimination issue. The Arnhem and Nijmegen University of Applied Sciences, Tilburg University and the University of Twente all had a different reason for quitting.
The Netherlands Institute for Human Rights believes it is good that there are educational institutions that have taken a closer look at Procotio. The fact that Radboud University actually stopped due to discrimination is absolutely wonderful, the supervisory authority said. However, the regulator finds it very unfortunate that so few educational institutions take into account the fact that the software can discriminate.
Educational institutions are obliged not to discriminate. Because exams could not be taken in a ‘normal’ way during the corona pandemic, exam software such as Proctorio has been used on a large scale. It is now up to educational institutions to determine whether it is necessary to continue with this software.
By: National Education Guide / Femke van Arendonk