AUT Fast Facts
- 2nd largest uni in NZ
- 20,000 EFT students
- Centralised timetabling process
- 2,100 exam sessions in 2016
- 64,000 exam sittings in 2016
- 171 rooms in exam pool
An effective examinations invigilation process is a vital part of every academic institution. It ensures that exams are conducted in accordance with regulatory requirements. Invigilation is part of a wider exams management process: separate from – but integral to – the scheduling of exams.
AUT has around 180 exam invigilators on its books. Between them, they observe more than 30,000 students sitting some 1,000 exams every semester. Just like any other staff member or student, each invigilator has restrictions and preferences around their availability.
Prior to deploying the Invigilator Rostering module in Exam Management System (EMS), the scheduling team at AUT would simply email their invigilators, asking them to reply with their availability for upcoming exams sessions. The would then manually enter individual invigilator’s availability into Exam Scheduler (ES) – a very time-consuming process and prone to errors.
EMS is a collection of five independent modules which works in parallel with Exam Scheduler. Like all Scientia’s cloud-based applications, it’s responsively-designed and optimised for mobile, tablet and desktop devices. It delivers a range of essential exam management functions through an easy-to-use interface.
Staff at AUT first became aware of EMS at the 2015 Exams Network Conference in Auckland, New Zealand. They were confident that the Invigilator Rostering module could significantly enhance the process of getting invigilator availability into ES during busy exam periods. They deployed the software in April 2017 and used it to gather availability for their Semester 1 2017 exams.
The fact that it has a very intuitive, user-friendly interface was a big draw for us. Once we’ve scheduled the semester’s exams and know the number and type of invigilators we need, the Invigilator Co-ordinator contacts our pool.
The EMS Dashboard
This enables the Exam Team to see which invigilators’ are available, and when. They can quickly identify who hasn’t responded to availability requests and contact them separately.
"Now, rather than sending an email request, we send a link to their personal portal in EMS, asking each invigilator to select which morning, afternoon or evening sessions they can observe. They simply click to select the ones they can do, submit the form online, and it automatically updates in ES. The integration between ES and EMS is really impressive. Data flows quickly and seamlessly between the EMS web portal and ES on premise."
Lisa Percy, Temps on Campus & HR Administration Support Manager at AUT, estimates that automating the invigilator availability process reduced the time collecting and collating invigilator availability from 2 weeks to 2-3 days in its first semester of use. Perhaps most importantly, feedback from invigilators has been very positive, with most reporting a preference for the new system.
EMS has enabled us to remove the duplication of a vital but time-consuming data entry process. It has substantially reduced the workload of the Exam Team here, enabling them to focus on allocations, training and invigilator recruitment.
It was quick and easy to use and I liked having control of the changes to my availability.