Exams and assessments - impact of COVID-19

Exam information for students

Our academic teaching teams have reduced the number of examinations as much as possible. Many assessments have been re-designated as assignments or have been moved to in-class tests. Some assessments still require exam-like arrangements and these are conducted online. We did not hold any exams in exam centres for Semester 2 2020. The only exception to this was a limited number of aviation, vet and other sciences courses. 

Your personalised examination timetable in your portal will show the type of exam you will have and the start time of that exam. If you are sitting an exam in another country, you will sit your exam on the calendar date of the exam and at the local time in your time zone, eg 9:15am 27 October, your time (the same as when you would normally have sat venue-based exams). Most paper-based examinations will be replaced by:

  • Time Constrained Assessments and Assignments (TCAs): exam-like unsupervised assessments that you complete on Stream. There is a time limit for these once you start.
  • Online Supervised Exams (OSEs): supervised exams that you access through Stream, starting at a set time and completing within a time limit. In general, only courses that have exams worth more than 60% of the overall grade will have Online Supervised Exams. The exception to this are courses where student’s assessments are required for professional and external accreditation purposes.
  • Other Assessments (OAs): for a limited number of vet, aviation and other science courses it is intended, subject to COVID-19 alert levels, that you will take the exam in-person (physically) in a supervised environment managed by your school.

Getting set up for your online assessment/exam

You should choose a place that is suitable for you. The situation you choose should be:

  • Quiet
  • Uninterrupted
  • Have a secure, stable internet connection
  • Have a power connection

Be clear of any materials that are not allowed in the exam rules.

Examples may be:

  • In your home.
  • A secluded space in a library (COVID-19 restrictions permitting).
  • If you live rurally you may be able to set up in e.g. your local school (COVID-19 restrictions permitting).
  • A quiet room/space on any Massey campus (COVID-19 restrictions permitting).

Time Constrained Assessments

Time Constrained Assessments will be delivered via your course Stream site. The assessment duration is in your personalised timetable in your portal. The duration of your assessment starts from when you open the assessment on Stream. A special Time Constrained Assessment stream site has been set up to help you prepare. This site:

  • Provides a practice test to try as often as you like before sitting your actual online assessment.
  • Answers common questions on the online assessment process.

Online Supervised Examinations

Massey is using a service called Remote Proctor Now or RPNow for short. RPNow allows a remote supervisor to monitor your examination setting, via your computer's webcam and microphone. You will access the exam through Stream like other online assessments.

RPNOW – What you need

The following table shows what requirements your computer/laptop will need to run RPNow for your online supervised exam.

If you are unable to install, download or run RPNow, or if you don't have a webcam and microphone, or a reliable broadband internet connection, please contact exams@massey.ac.nz so we can discuss options with you.

Operating system

Required Plug-ins

Connection speed


Windows 8, 8.1, 10  

Flash is NOT required  

Minimum 300kb/s upload speed^   
Satellite and Dial up connections are not supported  

.Net Framework is NOT required  

MAC  10.12, 10.13, 10.14, 10.15

Flash is NOT required   

Minimum 300kb/s upload speed^   
Satellite and Dial up connections are not supported  

Windows OS not supported on MAC  

RPNOW – How to use it

You will need to download the software every time you sit an online supervised exam. After the initial download it should take less time to download for each assessment. A special Online Supervised Exam Student Support Stream site has been set up to help you prepare to sit an online assessment which:

  • Provides step-by-step guides on how to install RPNow and sit an online assessment delivered through Stream.
  • Provides a practice test to try as often as you like before sitting your actual online assessment.
  • Answers common questions on the online assessment process.

Please note this Stream site will only be accessible to students who are enrolled in courses with Online Supervised Exam assessments.

Frequently asked questions

What are the rules during an online exam? 

See the Examination rules page.

What is a breach of academic integrity? 

A breach occurs when the rules are not obeyed. For example, if students collaborate or fail to abide by the honesty declaration. For more information, see the Academic Integrity pages.

What is an 'open web' exam or test? 

In an open web exam/test, you are allowed to access notes, books, or other specified resources during the exam/test. It is important to know what type of information and how much you will be allowed to use in the exam. For more information see the Open web exam or test page.

What type of device can I use for the assessment?

It is preferable to use a Window or Mac computer or laptop for the assessment. If you don’t have a computer or laptop ensure the device you use is one that can you can access and work in Stream.  

Is there an easy way to find out how much time is left during my assessment?  

Yes. There is a count-down clock in the navigation block which will show you how much time you have left to complete your assessment. You’ll need to complete and submit your exam within the set time.   

Where can I find my assessment?  

It will be available to you on your course Stream site at the scheduled date and time of your assessment.  

How do I start the assessment?  

Click on the assessment name to view the introduction and instructions.  Click “Attempt quiz now” to start the assessment.  A pop-up notification will ask you to confirm that you are ready to proceed (note, this step cannot be undone). 

How do I navigate within the assessment?  

Quizzes may spread across multiple pages. There is a quiz navigation block either at the top left or bottom left of every page of the assessment and a "next" button at the bottom of every page. Each time you click the "next" button or a link in the navigation block, your answers are automatically saved.  You can "go back" if you wish to change an answer at any time, but don't use your browser's back button.   
Clicking on a number in the quiz navigation block will take you to the corresponding page. You can always get to the last page by clicking on the "finish attempt" link in the navigation block.  

How are toilet breaks factored in during an online supervised exam?  

It is preferred you don’t move away during the exam. If you must take a toilet break indicate this to the camera verbally and by making a "T" sign with hands to the camera. This will be flagged as a violation by the RPNow software. The video will be scrutinized by a trained proctor/invigilator and if it is seen that you have indicated a toilet break this will be taken into consideration. 

What happens if my internet drops off or there is a power cut?

In case of an internet drop off, RPNow will continue to record until you resume the exam once the internet is regained. You can also keep going with an opened question in Stream, but you will not be able to start on a new question until the internet reconnects.  
In the event of a power cut, you can restart RPNow once power resumes or contact us: within New Zealand call 0800 627 739. From overseas call 0064 6 350 5701.

Are there any difficulties running RPNow with multiple screens/monitors and cameras? 

Only one screen/monitor can be used. Any additional screens/monitors will need to be unplugged when you are sitting your online supervised exam. Only one camera can be used. If you are using a webcam instead of the computer camera you will need to disable the computer camera.   

Am I allowed to use a calculator during the exam?

If using a calculator is permitted for your online supervised exam, show this to the camera at the start.  

What assistance is available if there are issues with RPNow during the exam? 

If there is an issue with RPNow, click the “Contact Support” button within RPNow. RPNow Support is available 24/7. For any issues with Stream or the exam you should contact us: within New Zealand call 0800 627 739. From overseas call 0064 6 350 5701.

How do I get the password required to sit an online supervised exam?

When you open RPNow locate, and open the assessment you wish to sit, there is a button at the top of this page that auto fills the required Stream password.  

How will I sit my Time Constrained Assessment?  Where will I find it?

Time Constrained Assessments will be delivered via your Course Stream site.

How long do I have to complete my Time Constrained Assessment or Online Supervised Exam?

The duration of either type of assessment is noted on your personalised timetable in your portal.  The duration of your assessment starts from when you open the assessment on Stream. 

Will the whole assessment be answered in Stream?  

Most assessments will be answered in Stream. There will be some assessments requiring equations or formulae that may have to be written on blank paper outside of Stream. These papers will have to be captured and uploaded into a drop box once the assessment is complete.  

Can I mark a question to revisit later?  

You can flag a question which will add a red mark to the question number in the navigation block. This allows you to easily return to the flagged question later.  

How do I submit my answers and finish the assessment?   

When you have answered all the questions in the assessment and checked your responses, click “finish attempt” in the navigation block.  Once you have done that you will be presented with an assessment summary. The summary indicates which questions have or have not been answered. You can click on any question number to return to it. To fully submit your answers, you must click “submit all and finish”. 

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