DSST Remote Proctoring: Overview

DSST exam have finally gone remote! Now you can test out at home, something that I’ve been hoping DSST would offer ever since CLEP announced remote proctoring last year. Since this is new, there is still a lot I don’t know about the process, but there are many things we DO know about how to successfully take these exams.

DSST is a standardized exam that can result in college credit. It is most similar to CLEP. The exam is a multiple-choice computer-based test that offers up your results instantly. DSST exams cost $100. We occasionally see coupons for DSST, but DSST does not have a voucher program like CLEP, so you’ll need to budget accordingly.

If you or someone in your family takes a DSST exam with remote proctoring, please let me know so I can share your feedback with the community.

Steps to Schedule the Exam

(do this once your student has already learned the information)

  1. Schedule the exam Use this link to Schedule directly with DSST. Note that DSST uses Prometric’s ProProctor software for the exam to provide a secure remote experience. (read about ProProctor)
  2. Confirm your computer’s specifications before test day.
    • Screen Resolution: 1024 X 768
    • Operating System: Windows 8.1 or above/ MacOS 10.13 or above
    • Web Browser: Latest Google Chrome
    • WebCam Resolution: 640 X 480p
    • Microphone: Enabled
    • Download Speed:  1.0 mbps
  3. Your remote testing environment must meet the following requirements:
    • Testing location must be indoors (walled), well lit, free from background noise and disruptions.
    • No third party may be present in the room or enter the room for the duration of the exam. If this occurs, your exam will be terminated and/or your results invalidated.
    • Your workstation and surrounding area must be free of pens, paper, electronic devices, etc. No content that could potentially provide an unfair advantage during your exam, including that posted on walls or within your immediate area, should be present during your exam session.
    • Two tissues are permitted at workstation, but must be inspected by the Proctor prior to start of exam.
  4. What security processes does a test taker go through?
    • In order to start an exam, test takers are required to:
    • Provide an original, valid (unexpired), government issued photo & signature bearing identification. Validity and the number of acceptable IDs is predetermined by your test sponsor.
    • Show your workstation and surrounding area.
    • Raise your pants legs above your ankles, empty and turn all pockets inside-out and raise shirt sleeves above your wrists prior to every entry into the online test. If you are wearing eyeglasses you will be required to remove them for visual inspection to ensure they don’t contain a recording device. 
    • Remove large jewelry items from your person prior to and throughout the duration of the exam.
    • Pull your hair back to ensure nothing is attached to your ear that could provide an unfair advantage – i.e. a bluetooth earpiece.

What to Expect on Test Day

Pro Tip: Download & install ProProctor application the day before!

Launch Your Exam
On test day, launch your exam by entering your appointment confirmation number and the first four (4) letters of your last name/ surname. You should launch your exam 15 minutes before the scheduled start time so that you can complete the inspection of your testing environment. If you completed the System Readiness Check before test day, click TAKE MY EXAM.

Image Capture
Simply position your face using the guides on the screen and click the CAPTURE
button. Make sure you check that the image clearly shows your face and is not blurry.
Click ACCEPT.

ID Capture
Position your ID card using the guides on the screen and click the CAPTURE button. Make sure you check that all text is readable. Be sure to use only a government-issued, non-expired ID. For specific identification requirements, check your exam confirmation email. Once complete, click ACCEPT.

Security Check

Your Prometric Readiness Agent will guide you through three
security checks before launching your exam.

  1. Candidate Detail Information
    Your readiness agent will confirm your name, email address, and exam details
    with you via video chat.
  2. 360˚ Environmental Check
    Your Readiness Agent will ask you to provide a 360˚ view of your environment using your webcam. Your agent also will ask you to scan your work surface using your webcam. During this step, your Readiness Agent will ask to inspect things such as bookshelves, wall hangings, as well as electronic devices. It is recommended to have a large bed sheet or linen available if asked to cover any area of clutter.
    IMPORTANT: Do not have your laptop connected to a docking station anytime during the setup of your exam. This can cause connectivity issues. Make sure to clear your workspace and put away all personal items.
  3. Candidate Person Check
    Your Readiness Agent will ask you to stand up to do a scan of yourself. This scan will include – but is not limited to – conducting sleeve, pocket, glasses, and behind ear checks. Additionally, you will be asked to turn all pockets inside out. IMPORTANT: To expedite the check-in process, please remember to empty your pockets prior to the visual check.

Take Your Exam!

Your score will appear instantly on the screen upon completion.

Score Reports

Like CLEP, if you designate a college during your testing session, they will send that college your score results. I recommend NOT doing that unless your student is already enrolled at the college or within 6 months of enrolling as a high school graduate. Instead, simply take all the DSST exams planned, and then request 1 transcript to go to each of your target colleges when you are ready to enroll.


DSST Page at Homeschooling for College Credit

Author:

Executive Director of Homeschooling for College Credit