IIT-Bombay Will Check Malpractices During Online Exams Using AI


IIT-Bombay is contemplating the introduction of artificial intelligence (AI)-based surveillance systems across all courses to detect malpractices during online assessments in the current semester. In an email addressed to students on August 5, Professor S Sudarshan, deputy director (academic and infrastructural affairs) said “remotely proctored” examinations could be implemented during the semester. Students would be expected to take tests from home for this, with a laptop camera tracking them. Last month IIT-Bombay had declared a full online semester beginning on August 10.

Proctoring incorporates the use of a program that tracks the behaviour of candidates and their electronic activities by audio and video monitoring before and during the test to detect any action that may be perceived as misconduct. Students may be asked to go to a nearby centre for final-semester exams.

“We are planning to have well-proctored exams at locations across the country for your end-semester exams. This will ensure that cheating cannot occur while allowing you to take the exams close to your home. However, the details still need to be worked out, and will share them once they are finalised, around mid-September,” said the email. Those found to be using unfair and dishonest means will face action, it added.

Prof Sudarshan of IIT-Bombay said, “Some experiments with proctoring services have been conducted so far. It will involve recording videos of students while they appear for the exam. These services make use of artificial intelligence to monitor behaviour, to check that they are not doing anything other than working on the exam.”  Although there are worries about privacy breaches, Prof Sudarshan said these would be fully explained. The institute can also deploy an internal application called ‘Safe,’ which will be used to circulate question papers and collect answers.

Approximately 50 individuals have been tested with COVID-19 on IIT-Bombay’s campus so far, a few of them are students, the email said. The university has allowed some students to come back to the campus as they cannot access online learning resources.

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