Suggestions to create a secure Computer-Based Testing environment

The following list, from Appendix W of the SAM, provides suggestions for how a school can create a secure computer-based testing (CBT) environment for operational CBT. We want our CBT schools to be able to plan effectively for the best CBT testing experience for students and understand that the transition to CBT from paper may present new testing-location organization considerations.   

The following seating arrangements are suggestions for creating a secure test environment for students who are taking the computer-based tests: 

  • Seat students in every other seat
  • Arrange monitors back-to-back
  • Seat students back-to-back
  • Seat students in a semicircle
  • Seat students in widely spaced rows or in every other row

The following physical and visual barriers between testing devices can also be used as security measures for computer-based testing:

  • Card stock (e.g., manila folders) that can be taped to the sides of monitors
  • Flattened cardboard boxes that can be cut, folded, and taped to form a visual barrier between testing devices
  • Cardboard carrels
  • Privacy screens that narrow the viewing angle of a computer monitor so that it is visible only to someone sitting in front of it. Schools that have privacy screens available should affix them to monitors prior to the beginning of testing and ensure that students are seated so that they cannot view the monitor of the student seated in the row in front of them

For more information, please view the School Administrator's Manual (SAM), Appendix W.