Oracle now offers online proctored exams

When signing up for a cert exam from Oracle (via PearsonVUE), you now get asked whether you want to take it “at a local test center” or “at my home or office.”

The online option sounded interesting so I clicked on it and went to the Online Proctored exam page. The gist is that if you can meet certain requirements, you can take the exam from home.

Computer requirements

Computer requirements are pretty standard. Any modern computer with Mac/Windows/Linux should be fine. Don’t take it over the corporate network though; it doesn’t play well with corporate firewalls.

Room requirements

The room requirements are where this falls apart for me. You have to be a walled room with a door. I live in New York City.; apartments are small. My apartment has two doors – one to get into the apartment and one for the bathroom. Everything else is one big room.

You also have to use your webcam to show that you aren’t in arm’s reach of books/notepads/post-its/papers/pens/pencils/etc. Additional monitors must be unplugged. Looking around, I have *a lot* of stuff within arms length. It would take a while to move things even if I had a room with a door.

Privacy

You have to be alone in the room. So prepare your family/roommates.

No Breaks

Ou are not allowed to take a bathroom break. I’ve never needed one during the exam. But it is three hours and some people do. In an exam center, you are allowed to go to the bathroom. It counts against your time, but you can go.

No writing

You aren’t allowed to write anything down. At the exam center, you can trace variables, write down questions to go back to etc. You have to return the paper at the end. Since this can’t be done at home, I understand why they can’t let you write anything down. However, I think it would be really hard to take a Java cert without writing anything down.

My thoughts

While I can’t do this, I think it is a good option for folks who have more space and/or live further away from a testing center. The not writing things down limitation would be hard though!

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