Cameras upgraded to keep testers honest

Rachel Morrison/Pioneer
Pre-pharmacy major John Mitchell takes a test in the Testing Lab while security cameras survey his activity from above. Plans have been made to upgrade the already tight surveillance system in the lab.

The watchful eye of surveillance cameras will be focused even more intently on students in the Testing Center after improved technology is added this semester.

Director Jim Ellis said the Testing and Assessment Center is reconfiguring its 16 surveillance cameras to help prevent cheating.

The center’s surveillance system will have expanded capabilities after the installation of new camera wires.

The new wiring will let the system use certain cameras to obtain a high definition view.

“It will protect those who were accused who were not cheating and also protect the staff when they said that person was cheating,” Ellis said.

“No more ‘he said, she said.’”

The new surveillance system is just one of the ways the center prevents academic misconduct, Ellis said.

Test takers also are constantly monitored by the center’s staff, which is on the lookout for suspicious activity.

The center does not allow personal items, such as mobile phones, to be taken into testing room.

Lockers are provided outside the center, at no cost to students. Tokens are provided.

“We might be rich if we took quarters,” Ellis said, jokingly.

If a student is caught cheating, an incident report is written and submitted to the faculty member teaching the class. The consequences that student receives are taken up with the faculty member that provided the exam.

“If people would spend as much time studying as they do figuring out how to cheat, they would pass.” Ellis said this is the center’s favorite saying.

Student Lauren Woodward welcomes the new cameras.

“I am excited about the new camera system because now other students will not be able to get through school by cheating off those who work hard for their grades” said junior, Lauren Woodward.

To take a test in the Testing Center, students must have an OCCC Identification card, Ellis said. There are no exceptions to this rule.

A complete list of the guidelines is available on the center’s website

To contact Alex Verity, email

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