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Preventing Networked Gizmo Use During Exams?

September 13th, 2010 09:12 admin Leave a comment Go to comments

bcrowell writes “I’m a college physics professor. My students all want to use calculators during exams, and some of them whose native language isn’t English also want to use electronic dictionaries. I had a Korean student who was upset and dropped the course when I told her she couldn’t use her iPod during an exam — she said she used it as a dictionary. It gets tough for me to distinguish networked devices (iPhone? iTouch?) from non-networked ones (calculator? electronic dictionary? iPod?). I give open-notes exams, so it’s not memory that’s an issue, it’s networking. Currently our classrooms have poor wireless receptivity (no Wi-Fi, possible cell, depending on your carrier), but as of spring 2011 we will have Wi-Fi everywhere. What’s the best way to handle this? I’d prefer not to make them all buy the same overpriced graphing calculator. I’m thinking of buying 30 el-cheapo four-function calculators out of my pocket, but I’m afraid that less-adaptable students will be unable to handle the switch from the calculator they know to an unfamiliar (but simpler) one.”

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