Remote Testing Features

Features by Role

There are remote testing features available in the secure browser and the web-based Student Testing Interface for the summative assessments, interim assessments, and practice and training tests. The remote testing features in table 1 are available by SSO role.

Table 1. Remote Testing Features in the Secure Browser and Web-based Student Testing Interface by SSO Role

Icon Feature Initiated By (SSO Role)
Calendar with the words 'schedule a session' written directly below Advanced scheduling of test sessions
  • LEA coordinator
  • Site coordinator
  • TA
Video camera Video monitoring
  • LEA coordinator (to confirm)
  • Site coordinator (to confirm)
  • TA (to monitor)
Chat bubbles and the word 'messages' written directly below Individual messaging
  • Student
  • TA
White hand within a red circle Raise hand
  • Student only
Blue phone within a gray circle One-on-one video call
  • TA only
Megaphone with the word 'broadcast' directly below Broadcast
  • TA only
Two people looking at a screen Screen share
  • TA only


Advanced Scheduling

Remote test sessions can be scheduled only after the testing window has opened. Sessions can be scheduled for any date within two weeks from the current date. Take the following steps to schedule a remote test in advance:

  1. Select the [Test Administrator Interface for All Online Tests] button on either the CAASPP or ELPAC website.
  2. Log on to the Test Administrator Interface using the current-year TOMS logon access.
  3. Select the [Upcoming Sessions] tab and then the [Schedule a Session] button (figure 1).

    Test Administration screen with the Upcoming Session tab and the Schedule a Session button.

    Figure 1. Test Administrator Interface Test Administration screen with the [Upcoming Session] tab and the [Schedule a Session] button

  4. In the Operational Test Selection interface, select the start and end date for the future test session and then the [Next] button, which is indicated in figure 2.

    Test Administration screen with the Upcoming Session tab and the Schedule a Session button indicated.

    Figure 2. Remote Operational Test Selection interface with the [Next] button

  5. Choose the testing category of the assessment to schedule. An example of the Operational Test Selection screen showing the testing categories is presented in figure 3.

    Operational Test Selection screen showing categories for the Smarter Balanced Summative and Interim Assessments, CAAs, CAST, CSA, and the Alternate, Summative, Initial, and Initial Alternate ELPAC.

    Figure 3. Operational Test Selection screen

  6. Select the plus-sign [Expand] icon to expand the options for the exact grade and name of the test students will take (figure 4). Test categories are separated by color and identified by name.

    Operational Test Selection screen with the list of available items expanded and Session Settings section that includes the session name, session type and Save Session button indicated.

    Figure 4. Expanded tests in the Upcoming Sessions Test Selection screen

  7. Enter a session name in the Session Name field, select the Remote or Hybrid radio button, and then select the [Save Session] button (indicated in figure 4). A Session Information pop-up box appears, providing the session ID and session link (figure 5).

    Session Information pop-up with Session ID presented

    Figure 5. Session Information pop-up box with session ID

  8. Edit or delete the session in the days prior to the scheduled session date. Note the following about this action:
    • Session information is not editable on the day of the session.
    • The edit function permits changing the date or selecting additional tests to add to the testing session.
    • Only the session type cannot be edited.
    • To switch from a remote session to an in-person session or vice versa, delete the session and recreate it with the correct session type.

In-person test sessions are scheduled and administered separately from remote-testing sessions. This allows student results to be categorized and reported correctly.

No more than 20 students should be tested during a remote test session. This number is based on observations made during user acceptance testing of the remote environment.

TA Webcam and Microphone

When starting a remote test session, a pop-up box prompts agreement to allow the testing system to access the device’s webcam and microphone. Check the I agree checkbox and select the [Allow] button (figure 6). During the test session, you—as TA—have the ability to toggle the device’s webcam and microphone on and off.

Checkbox with the words 'I agree' to give permission to the testing system to access the student's webcam and microphone; the allow button is indicated.

Figure 6. Permission box for remote tools

Monitoring a Test Session

Monitor students’ progress as they are testing from the Operational Test Session screen in the Test Administrator Interface (figure 7).

Operational Test Session screen with 'Student Information,' 'Test,' 'Progress,' 'Status,' 'Test Settings,' and 'Actions' columns.

Figure 7. Operational Test Session screen with a student selected

There are several tools useful for monitoring students in the Test Administrator Interface:

  • The Student Information column provides information about the students testing remotely. The video thumbnail icon next to the student’s name and SSID displays a snippet from the student’s video feed every five seconds. If the student’s camera is not on or is not working, the video thumbnail appears grayed out. If a student raises their hand in the communication widget, a [Chat] chat bubble icon appears next to the student’s video thumbnail.
  • The test status indicates whether a student’s test is approved, started, completed, or paused.
  • The blue progress bar shows the student’s progression through the test.
  • When selected, the [View], or eye, icon opens the test settings for each student.
  • If a student’s test requires attention, has been idle, is unexpectedly disconnected from a session, or has pending requests for print-on-demand, the Test Administrator Interface separates the test into a “Tests with Potential Issues” section.

Video Monitoring

The three icons above the testing program legend on the right side of the Operational Test Session screen allow toggling between student thumbnail layouts. These are shown in table 2.

Table 2. Layout Icons

Icon View Type
Three horizontal lines List View
Three by three matrix of squares Gallery View
Two by two matrix of squares Grid View

The List View (figure 8) is the default view when the TA first enters the Test Administrator Interface. As students complete their audio and video checks, they appear in the Test Administrator Interface test monitoring screen in this view with video monitoring thumbnails for each student. The video feed refreshes every five seconds.

Operational Test Session screen with 'Student Information,' 'Test,' 'Progress,' 'Status,' 'Test Settings,' and 'Actions' columns.

Figure 8. Operational Test Session screen in List View

If the student loses video or connectivity at any time, a “sad-face” Red circle around a cloud with a sad face icon displays instead of the student’s picture. If the test requires video, the student is not able to proceed with the test until the student’s video is reconnected. Select the thumbnail of the student to open the communication widget that allows direct communication with the student.

The Gallery View (figure 9) shows 10 students at a time; scroll to see additional students if there are more than 10 students in the administration.

Operational Test Session screen in Gallery View.

Figure 9. Operational Test Session screen in Gallery View

The Grid View looks like the Gallery View, except it displays four students at a time with larger pictures.

The following actions are possible from the Gallery View:

  • Pause students’ tests by selecting the [Pause] icon
  • View the percentage of tests that have been completed
  • Identify students who need additional support (A red raised hand or chat bubble appears in this view if a student sends a message or raises a hand.)

TA Communication Widget

Once a test session has begun, there are several tools to communicate with the student. The communication icons function similarly across the three view types.

  • Select a student’s thumbnail from the default list view to open the communication widget that allows direct communication with the student.
  • Select the [Phone] icon to video call one-to-one with the student.
  • Select the [Messages] icon to chat with one student or to send out a broadcast message to all students at once in the chat; the message is read to students automatically using text-to-speech.
  • Select the [Video] icon to view the live student video again.
  • If the student’s [Raise Hand] icon was activated, select the [Lower Hand] icon once the student’s question is resolved.
  • Select the [Exit] icon to exit the communication widget.

One-to-One Video Call

Only you, as the TA, can initiate a one-to-one video call, not the student; select the [Phone] icon to make a call. Video of both you and the student are present on a split screen during the video call (figure 10). The student can see and hear you, but only you have the ability to turn on and off the student’s video and microphone. To end the call, select the [Phone] icon again.

One-to-One Video Call split screen showing test examiner and student

Figure 10. One-to-one video call with split screen

Broadcast Feature

Use the broadcast feature to communicate with all the students in the test session (figure 11). This is a one-way feature only the TA can initiate—students cannot communicate with other students during the test session.

When sending a broadcast text message, all students receive the message in the communication widget. The broadcast message displays differently to the student than the chat message does. The broadcast is seen as text in the student communication widget and is read aloud automatically to the students using text-to-speech.

Portion of test screen with a broadcast message box.

Figure 11. Broadcast message

For a demonstration of the TA communication widget features, watch the Monitoring a Remote Test Session video.

Screen Share View

Use the screen share feature to view a student’s screen during the test session (figure 12). This is a one-way feature only the TA can initiate by selecting the [screen share] icon.

Sample screen share view showing the student's view of the widget and the student's screen.

Figure 12. A screen share view

After selecting the [screen share] icon, the student needs to grant permission by selecting the [I agree] box and [Allow] button on the widget. Once the student grants permission, a red dotted line appears around the student’s screen indicating that the screen is being shared. The Test Administrator Interface has a window with a live feed of the student’s screen. The student can still interact with the test while sharing the student’s screen; use the chat widget and audio or video features to chat with the student. Select the [X] in the upper right corner of the window or select the [End Screen Share] icon in the widget to end sharing. The red line disappears once screen sharing stops.


This section can be shared with parents/guardians and students prior to testing and is written with the student in mind. The Student Remote Testing Guide is available as well.

Student Communication Widget

When you log on to the test, a widget with a small image of your live video appears in the corner of your screen. Select this widget for more tools to communicate with your teacher during the test.

Table 3. Remote Testing Icons in the Secure Browser and Web-based Student Testing Interface

Icon Description
White hand within a red circle Select the [Raise Hand] icon on the sidebar of the widget to get your teacher’s attention.
Chat bubbles and the word 'messages' written directly below Select the [Messages] icon to switch from video view to chat view to send your teacher a message.
Example of a broadcast message showing a box with the text 'students receive broadcast messages from the test administrator that look like this and play aloud automatically' in a box and a play button next to the text box. If your teacher sends a message to everyone at once, it plays aloud automatically. You can read the message in the chat or press the [Play] button next to it to listen to it again.
Pause If you need to step away from your computer or tablet, make sure you press the [Pause] button first at the top of your screen.

Student Audio/Video Checks

Camera Check

To complete the camera check, you need to first select the box to agree to grant the web browser permission to access your camera by selecting the checkbox next to I agree to grant the browser permission to access the camera (figure 13). When your individual video appears, select the green [I see myself] button.

If you select the [I cannot see myself] button, the system will help you solve the problem.

Audio/Video Check screen with checkbox for agreeing to give permission to access the camera.

Figure 13. Audio/Video Checks screen

Recording Device Check

The check for a recording device is required for all students, in case you have to enter into a call with your teacher during a remote test session.

To complete the recording device check, select the [Recording] microphone [Recording icon] icon button, record a brief statement, press the [Stop] square [Stop recording button] icon button, and then replay the recording.

If you select the [I did not hear my recording] button (figure 14), the system will help you solve the problem.

Recording Device Check screen.

Figure 14. Recording Device Check screen

Sound and Video Playback Check

To complete the sound and video playback check, first select the [Play] button. If you can hear the music and see the moving musical notes, you can select the green [I could play the video and sound] button (figure 15).

If you cannot hear the music and see the moving musical notes, select the [I could not play the video or sound] button and the system will help you solve the problem.

Sound and Video Playback Check screen.

Figure 15. Sound and Video Playback Check section of the Audio/Video Checks screen

Text-to-Speech Sound Check

To complete the text-to-speech sound check, select the [Speaker] [TTS speaker icon] icon and, if you want to, change the voice pack and adjust the volume, pitch, or rate (figure 16). Then, indicate whether you have heard the voice, did not hear the voice, or want to skip the check. Finally, select [Continue].

If you select the [I did not hear the voice] button, the system will help you solve the problem.

Text-to-Speech Sound Check page.

Figure 16. “Text-to-Speech Sound Check” section of the Audio/Video Checks screen

For a demonstration of these features, you can watch the How to Take a Remote Test video.