Proctortrack software at the UofR: list of student actions so far and other background information

Here are a list of actions that have been taken by students so far in response to the use of Proctortrack software. We will also include a couple of ways that students can take their own action and help put more pressure on the university to stop using it. Please email info@rpirg.org if we are missing any other actions being taken, or if you have suggestions for other resources about this software we can add to our resource section.

Media coverage about University of Regina context:

Proctortrack suspends services after security breach (Western Gazette article by Rebekah Rodrigues, Oct 15, 2020)

E-proctoring lives up to worst expectations as university continues to push spyware (Carillon article by Isaac Tamlin, Oct 1, 2020)

University of Regina students worried anti-cheating software will invade privacy (CBC article Sept 22, 2020)

E-proctoring Part 2: Electric Booglaoo (Carillon article by Isaac Tamlin, September 17, 2020)

Online proctoring software is invasive, intrusive, untested (Carillon article by Isaac Tamlin, September 11, 2020)

‘It’s invasive’: U of R student raising privacy concerns about new exam monitoring software (CTV coverage by Cally Stephanow, Friday Sept 11, 2020)


Actions by Elias Maze, UofR student:

  • Initial response
  • Initial letter to administration signed by over 100 students and RPIRG

Letters sent to university admin from Avery Cameron and Noah Rowbotham, software systems engineering students:

  • Email 1: summarizing list of concerns
  • Email 2: detailed response to UofR ProctorTrack FAQ page
  • Email 3: concerns about how much students were informed before introducing ProctorTrack

Comments by RPIRG Outreach and Events Coordinator Julian Wotherspoon, about red flags about consent to use of software:

“UofR STUDENTS: The university is asking your profs to make sure you receive more information about ProctorTrack before the drop deadline so that they can argue that you consented by staying registered. I’ve just sent an email to my faculty letting them know that my continued registration in my fall classes IS NOT to be taken as consent to the use of surveillance software and I have asked for an exemption. All the rest of you should do this too… Of all the hills I thought I would die on at the University of Regina… I always thought it would be a tuition strike, not a ‘please don’t allow a 3rd party software to collect administrative and biometric data about me for profit”


Petitions:

Started by Carl Sandin: Call on the University of Regina to Remove ProctorTrack (Update from Carl Sept 23, 2020)

Started by Alex Clarke: Cancel the use of proctortrack at University of Regina


Other ways that students can get involved or put pressure on the university:

  • we can connect you with other students who are taking action on this. Just email info@rpirg.org to let us know and we can pass on your contact information
  • send your own letter to your professors, department head, faculty and university of Regina president Tom Chase, explaining your concerns. Having this in writing is helpful for tracking how many people are speaking up. If you’re nervous about sending something on your own, talk to your peers about a group letter ask your student club or association(s) to consider sending one!
  • tweet at the UofR (@uofregina) to publicly voice your concerns. Include URSU (@urstudentsunion) and the faculty association URFA (@UofRFA) so they can also keep track to help with advocacy, and use the hashtag #UofRegina so they are more visible
  • The Carillon is looking for feedback (that can be anonymous) from faculty and students so they can run a story the week of Sept 21-25 about what people think of the software. You can submit feedback here

Other resources:

University of Regina frequently asked questions (FAQ) about Proctortrack

Are Schools Forcing Students To Install Spyware That Invades Their Privacy As A Result Of The Coronavirus Lockdown? (Forbes)

Software that monitors students during tests perpetuates inequality and violates their privacy (MIT Technology Review)

Watching through the webcam: Ontario and ProctorTrack’s attempt at academic integrity (The Pigeon)

This entry was posted in Events, News. Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.