Instructors were often asking us to secure the OIT Lab computers to make it so students could not cheat during tests. In the past, we unplugged the network cable from the computer, but all that does is make it so students could not surf the web. A better solution was needed. This solution was used even after the university moved to Respondus Lockdown browser for online tests because instructors still preferred this method for in-person tests.
I researched software for classroom management and found Faronics Insight. We already used their DeepFreeze software and were pleased with the ease it could be used. It was also a fairly inexpensive software because the license is to pay by instructor computer with unlimited student computers. For less than $1,000, we were able to purchase software to use in all of our teaching labs: Humanities 201, Humanities 202, Tickle 403, Presidential 113A, English Writing Classroom in Humanities 204, and the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources (CASNR) in Brehm Animal Science 243.
I created a training session to teach instructors on how to use the software. I trained instructors in African Studies, English, Mathematics, Modern Foreign Languages, Psychology, and Nursing. Instructors took the original issue of needing something to help them with tests and began to use the other features of the software to enable active collaboration between themselves and students by showcasing student computers and working with them on papers. Because the software can be used to specify allowance of certain web pages or apps, we’ve also been able to extend the number of people able to use the labs because we now follow the established best practices for test taking on several Masters’ level exams.
An example of the original introductory Insight training on PowerPoint.