Policies for Taking Exams
NOTE: The following policies were developed in compliance/conjunction with National Testing Center Association best practices.
Testing Center Hours
Please check the Testing Center home page for our current operating hours.
All exams must be completed by the posted closing time for that day, no exceptions. Test takers must complete their exams and have exited the testing center itself, especially on days when the Center's posted closing time coincides with the Library closing time, no later than 15 minutes prior to the posted closing time. As a general rule, exams will not be permitted to start within ONE HOUR prior to the posted closing time; later start times may be permitted at the discretion of Testing Center staff. Under no circumstances will an exam be permitted to begin within 30 minutes of the posted closing time. All exams must be allotted the full time as indicated by the instructor; for example, if an exam is listed as "up to two hours", the student must arrive and check in no later than two hours prior to our posted closing time. Please note that all exams, regardless of time allowed, must be finished and the test taker have exited our facility no later than 15 minutes prior to our posted closing time, to allow staff to complete closing procedures.
Testing Center Closure
The Testing Center will be closed in accordance with the university/Meyer Library schedule. Testing will not take place when Meyer Library is closed. In addition, testing will not take place during posted university holidays. In the event of university closure due to inclement weather, a determination as to cancellation of exams will be made on a case by case basis. Every effort will be made to provide adequate notice of exam cancellation.
The Testing Center may occasionally be closed for software/hardware upgrades, testing events, or other situations. Every effort will be made to post these changes in schedule on our website.
Scheduled appointments and/or advance registration is required for all exams administered through the Testing Center.
Testing Center Reception and Check-In Hours
The Testing Center Reception and Check-In area is staffed during all testing hours. Voice mails left after these hours will be answered the next business day. Emails sent to the Testing Center department email account will be answered the next business day. If you have an urgent or time sensitive issue, please contact the Coordinator directly at SueMcCrory@missouristate.edu.
Computer-based and individual paper-based exams are given in the Testing Center itself; some group computer-based and paper-based exams may also be administered through the Center. Some group paper-based exams such as the ACT or SAT may be administered in other locations on campus. Test candidates should confirm the location of a specific exam before any given test date. Many national tests may or may not be offered at other institutions on the same dates. Please see the navigation bar on the left side of the page for a list of many of the exams available.
The Testing Center has three private accommodation testing rooms available by reservation only. Candidates who need disability accommodations should contact the Disability Resource Center for Missouri State University, at 417-836-4192 to request accommodations. Non-Missouri State University candidates may contact the Testing Center directly, and we will work with the DRC to accommodate their needs.
Accommodations available in the accessible testing rooms include but are not limited to:
- Height-adjustable tables
- JAWS or another appropriate screen reader
- Closed-circuit television
Exams administered by the Testing Center may require a “sitting fee” as well as any fees required by the testing company. Sitting fees for exams offered via the Testing Center are listed on the individual exam page. All Testing Center sitting fees are paid through our online payment system; links are posted on our website. Please click on Exams Offered on the navigation bar to the left for information about that specific exam.
Candidates may be required to show proof of payment before being allowed to sit for a given exam. Please bring proof of payment to any test administration that requires payment in advance. Test candidates who have not paid the required sitting fee in advance will not be allowed to sit for an exam.
All candidates are expected to adhere to the Missouri State University Academic Integrity Policy.
Candidates should be aware that the Testing Center is under electronic as well as physical surveillance at all times. Candidates should expect to be visually inspected, turn out pockets, be restricted to Center-issued scratch paper and pencils, submit calculators for inspection, allow staff to inspect items such as glasses with heavy frames for possible hidden cameras, remove all items from wrists, pull up sleeves, remove and store personal belongings such as hats or sunglasses, and other academic integrity enforcement activities. Candidates who violate the university's academic integrity policy may be subject to penalties; candidates who violate vendor policies for their exam may also be subject to penalties imposed by the vendor.
To help prevent even the appearance of academic dishonesty and to ensure test takers are focused on instructions we may be giving, test candidates are not allowed to study or review notes while in the Testing Center lobby or in line to check in. Candidates can step outside to the library proper for last minute studying opportunities.
As a general rule, candidates cannot leave the test center for any reason once they have checked in for their exam. If a candidate needs to utilize the restroom facilities, for instance, they should do so BEFORE checking in. Most tests prohibit candidates from taking breaks, unless specifically authorized, during exams. Candidates must notify the testing center staff if they need to leave for any reason.
Information Technology Acceptable Use Policy
All candidates are expected to adhere to the Missouri State University Information Technology Acceptable Use policy. Candidates who violate the university's acceptable use policy may be subject to penalties.
Food and drink are strictly prohibited within the Testing Center. "Comfort aids", such as cough drops, may be permitted, depending on the requirements of a specific exam. As a rule, if "comfort aids" such as cough drops are permitted, they must be unwrapped prior to entering the testing lab.
Open Book Exams
While it is an instructor's prerogative to allow open book exams, please keep in mind the following if an instructor chooses this option for proctored exams:
- Students using e-texts will not have access to their online text IF an instructor has chosen either Respondus Lockdown or Respondus Monitor, as recommended.
- Students using e-texts cannot use their own devices in the Testing Center (and may not be able to use them at other testing centers).
- Students using e-texts may experience technical difficulties trying to access an e-text at a testing center and have no alternative if the technology fails.
- Allowing open book exams with e-texts exponentially complicates proctoring, as the proctors cannot be familiar with every e-text option, or what’s “legal” in a web-based product for an open book exam.
If an instructor chooses to allow an open book exam and students may be using the Testing Center, we will make every effort to work with faculty and students to try and make an e-text available, but there is no guarantee this will be possible.
Test candidates who do not have a Missouri State University parking permit should utilize the Visitors parking lot (Lot 14) located at the corner of National Avenue and Bear Boulevard, and allow sufficient time on the meter for the exam being taken. Test candidates are responsible for knowing how much time is required for their exam. The Visitors parking area at Lot 14 accepts debit and credit cards. Additional metered parking is available elsewhere on campus, on a cash-only basis. Day passes at a cost of $2.75 per day are also available through the Parking Administration Office.
Requirements for Taking an Exam
- Candidates must register in advance for any exams. Some exams require payment for the test as well as a sitting fee. Candidates are responsible for determining what payments are required and ensuring appropriate payments have been made prior to appearing for an exam. Candidates who have not paid the appropriate fees will not be allowed to sit for their exam.
- Candidates may have to provide proof of registration and/or sitting fee payment when appearing for an exam.
- Candidates must present any documents as required by the specific exam in question.
- Candidates must present a photo ID and any additional identification required by the specific exam at the time of check-in. Candidates are responsible for knowing what identification is required for their specific exam. If a candidate's appearance has significantly altered since the photo on the ID was taken, the candidate may be required to provide a second form of photo ID.
- No personal belongings other than those specifically allowed by a given exam are permitted in the test room. This includes but is not limited to hats, sunglasses, watches, bracelets, scarves, jackets, coats, etc. Lockers with combination locks are provided in the waiting area for examinee use. Candidates will be provided with a locker upon check in. Candidates are responsible for removing personal belongings after an exam is completed.
- We cannot permit candidates to sit for an exam outside of an exam window provided by the instructor.
Calculators or other resources such as scratch paper are determined by the requirements for a given exam. As a general rule, calculators which are capable of sending or receiving wireless signals are not permitted. Candidates should be prepared to allow Testing Center staff to inspect calculators for potential attempts to violate academic integrity policies. Please refer to the test owner or your professor for additional information.
Test takers are not permitted to use their own scratch paper or writing instruments, and are only allowed to use Center-issued scratch paper, pens, or pencils. If a given exam allows the student to bring note sheets or other preprinted resources, those resources will be inspected prior to admission and collected after the exam. These materials may be shredded or returned to the instructor, at the instructor's discretion. Under no circumstances will a test taker be permitted to take note sheets or scratch paper outside of the testing center.
Cell Phone/Electronic Device Policy
Cell phones and other electronic devices, other than those specifically designated as medically necessary, are universally prohibited from the Testing Center. Lockers with electronic combination locks are provided in the check-in area for candidates to leave such devices and other personal belongings. Other than the previously mentioned medically-necessary devices, any device which can receive or transmit a wireless signal is not permitted in the testing facility.
CDs, CD-ROMs, USB drives, and other storage media are strictly prohibited in the testing facility.
Medically necessary devices include, but are not limited to, hearing aids, electro-larynxes or computer-based speech generating devices, Epi-pens, etc.
In consideration of all test candidates, children and non-candidates are prohibited from the Testing Center. Please refrain from bringing children or guests with you when appearing for an exam. Children under the age of 18 may not be left in any part of the Testing Center unattended at any time. The Testing Center reserves the right to ask non-test candidates to leave the Testing Center.
Candidates have rights and responsibilities when taking an exam at the University Testing Center. Candidates have the right to:
- Have a quiet and distraction-minimized environment respected by both the University Testing Center staff and other candidates.
- Secure personal belongings in a locker with a combination that is user-selected. Candidates may be required to remove and store watches or other similar items.
Candidates will also:
- Be under electronic and/or physical surveillance during all examinations.
- Present government-issued identification as specified by a given examination; generally, exams require a government-issued photo ID for admittance to an exam. Additional identification materials may be required by individual exams.
- Maintain a quiet examination environment, which includes but is not limited to:
- Refrain from creating a distraction for other candidates.
- Refrain from visually or verbally communicating with other candidates.
- Leave all personal belongings, other than those permitted by an individual exam, in
the lockers provided.
- No bags, purses, cases, or backpacks are allowed in the testing room.
- No mobile phones, tablets, calculators, external devices, or any device which can receive or transmit a wireless signal is permitted in the testing room, with the exception of those devices which are documented as medically necessary.
- No DVDs, CD-ROMs, USB drives or other storage media are permitted in the testing room.
- Food or drinks are specifically prohibited from the testing room. This includes candy and gum.
- Children and guests are prohibited from the testing room.
- Be prepared to remain in the testing room, other than permitted breaks, for the entirety
of the exam period.
- If using a metered parking space, it is the candidate's responsibility to ensure sufficient time is allowed for the duration of the exam. Candidates will not be permitted to leave the testing room to add money to a parking meter.
- Use of the restroom outside of designated breaks may require an escort to and from the testing room, dependent on exam requirements.
- Violation of any of the above policies may result in penalties, up to and including a ban from the Testing center.
The testing function of the Testing Center is coordinated by the Testing Center Coordinator in conjunction with the Testing Technician. A wide range of tests is available to university students, faculty, staff and individuals within the community for a variety of purposes.
Many of the tests administered are standardized tests (administered at the national, state, and local levels) and include college admission (undergraduate and graduate), proficiency certification and aptitude examinations. These tests are administered under the direction of the Testing Center Coordinator, the Testing Technician, or other designees. The Testing Center Coordinator and the Testing Technician are responsible for making certain that the policies and procedures of the various testing companies are followed, and may set and enforce testing-related rules as needed. The Testing Center Coordinator, in conjunction with the Testing Technician, shall be responsible for setting a schedule for testing in the Testing Center.
The staff of the Testing Center will not directly collect fees related to testing from candidates – all sitting or testing fees must be paid via the Testing Center website or the website of the specific exam. If an examinee fails to pay his or her testing or sitting fee prior to appearing for an exam, he or she may be required to pay via the website prior to being allowed to sit for the desired exam.