Use Chromebooks for student assessments

You can use Chromebooks as a secure platform for administering student assessments and, when set up properly, they meet K–12 education testing standards. With Chromebooks, you can disable students’ access to browse the web during an exam, and disable external storage, screenshots, and the ability to print.

Both the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) and the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium have verified that Chromebooks meet hardware and operating system requirements for online student assessments.

Setup

Assessments can be delivered on Chromebooks in any of these 3 ways:

  • Scenario 1The exam is delivered on Chromebooks set up as a single-app kiosk. In this method, the testing provider creates the exam as a Chrome kiosk app, and it runs in a full-screen mode.
  • Scenario 2A testing provider sets up a new domain specifically for taking the test, and the student takes the assessment on the provider-issued account.
  • Scenario 3A school delivers the test through managed guest sessions.

Pre-requirements:

  1. Get Chrome management for each Chrome device.
  2. Enroll each device in your school’s domain.

With each method, the administrator can configure the device for secure student testing.

Scenario 1: School sets up Chromebook as a single-app kiosk running the exam app

Requirement: You need to have the exam available as a Chrome kiosk app. For more information, see Create and deploy Chrome kiosk apps.

  1. Sign in to your Google Admin console.

    Sign in using your administrator account (does not end in @gmail.com).

  2. From the Admin console Home page, go to Devicesand thenChrome management.

    If you don't see Devices on the Home page, click More controls at the bottom.

  3. Click Apps & extensions.
  4. Select Kiosks
  5. Select the exam kiosk app you want to use. Using the menu on the right, you can search for it on the Chrome Web Store or, if you have the app ID and URL, manually install it by selecting Add Chrome app or extension by ID.
  6. From Auto-launch app, select the app and configure the kiosk app settings.
    Make sure the devices you want to administer the exam with are under the organizational unit you select for the kiosk app.

Auto-launch setting for a kiosk app

  • If Auto-launch kiosk app is not configured, then the student sees a menu of kiosk apps in the system tray on the sign-in screen. The student must select the appropriate kiosk app to launch it and take the test. After the test is complete, the student can exit the kiosk app and sign back into a user session.
  • If Auto-launch kiosk app is configured, when the device next starts, it immediately loads the kiosk app.

For help setting up kiosks, see Managed guest settings.

Scenario 2: Testing provider sets up student accounts for assessment

Steps for the provider:

  1. The testing provider creates a separate domain, owned by the provider.
  2. The provider creates student accounts.
  3. Block all apps but those you want to allow.

    These steps assume you're familiar with making Chrome settings in your Admin console.

    1. Sign in to your Google Admin console.

      Sign in using your administrator account (does not end in @gmail.com).

    2. From the Admin console Home page, go to Devicesand thenChrome management.

      If you don't see Devices on the Home page, click More controls at the bottom.

    3. Click Apps & extensions.
    4. To apply the setting to everyone, leave the top organizational unit selected. Otherwise, select a child organizational unit.
    5. At the top, click Users & Browsers.
    6. From the Allow users to install other apps & extensions menu, choose Block all other apps & extensions.
    7. Click Save.
  4. In the Admin console, under Device management and then Chrome management and then User & browser settings, set the following:
    Setting How to configure
    Incognito mode Select Disallow incognito mode.
    Screenshot Select Disallow users from taking screenshots.
    URL blocking Set up a URL blacklist to block all URLs with a wildcard (*). And set URL blacklist exceptions for the assessment URL and any other tools the student is allowed access. Learn more.
    Printing Select Disable printing.
    External storage devices Select Disallow external storage devices.

    See Set Chrome policies for users or browsers for more details on each setting.

Steps for the school’s IT administrator:

  1. Sign in to the school’s Admin console used to manage the students’ Chromebooks.
  2. Go to Device management and then Chrome management and then Device settings and select the organizational unit your students' devices are in.
  3. Under User data, select Erase all local user data to erase the student's data from the device when they sign out. This is recommended for accounts specifically made for assessments.
  4. (Optional) Under Sign-in restriction, select Restrict sign-in to a list of users and enter “*@assessmentdomain.com”. This restricts who can sign in to the device as only those belonging to the assessment domain. Learn more.

Steps for the student:

  1. Sign in to the Chromebook using the username and password given by the provider.
  2. Take the test.
  3. Sign out once the test is complete. On signing out, the device is wiped.

More security information:

In addition to Chrome’s native management capabilities listed above, some assessment providers may also choose to deploy their own Chrome extensions to add additional controls, such as tools to verify who’s signed in to the device and additional reporting.

Scenario 3: School sets up managed guest sessions on student devices

Chrome version 73 and later.

For managed Chromebooks and other devices running Chrome OS.

  1. Sign in to your Google Admin console.

    Sign in using your administrator account (does not end in @gmail.com).

  2. Move students taking the assessment to an organizational unit. For details, see Move users to an organizational unit.
  3. Enroll devices. For details, see Enroll Chrome devices.
  4. Put Chrome devices in the organizational unit where you configure managed guest session settings. For details, see Move a Chrome device to an organizational unit.
  5. Go to Devices and then Chrome management.
  6. Click Managed guest session settings.
  7. To apply the setting to everyone, leave the top organizational unit selected. Otherwise, select a child organizational unit.
  8. Next to Managed guest session, select Allow managed guest session.
  9. Enter the name that you want your users to see for the session. 
  10. Configure managed guest session settings:
    1. (Optional) Maximum user session length—Set the amount of time you’re allowing for the exam.
    2. Idle settings—Set Idle time in minutes to at least 15 minutes.
    3. Incognito mode—Select Disallow incognito mode.
    4. Screenshot—Select Disable screenshot.
    5. URL blocking—For URL blacklist, enter https://* to block all URLs. For URL blacklist exceptions, enter the assessment URL and any other URLs that the student can access during the assessment.
    6. Printing—Select Disable printing.
    7. External storage devices—Select Disallow external storage devices.
  11. Click Save.
  12. Choose the apps and extensions that you want to install. For details, see Automatically install apps and extensions.
  13. Prevent students from accessing the test URL outside of the managed guest session:
    1. Go to Devices and then Chrome management.
    2. Click User & browser settings.
    3. To apply the setting to everyone, leave the top organizational unit selected. Otherwise, select a child organizational unit.
    4. Scroll to URL blocking.
    5. For URL blacklist, enter the assessment URL.
    6. Click Save.

Make sure that students use the managed guest session to take the test and don't sign in to their Google account. When students finish the exam and exit the managed guest session, the session is wiped from the device.

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