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The pupil sits at a computer and fills in the form to answer the questions. For exams involving graphs, equations or other hard-to-do-on-the-computer things, they can also switch to working on paper.
At the end of the exam, the PDF is printed out and the exam goes away on paper with the rest to be marked. So this week it's been my job to get this going. I thought it would be useful to write down the process and considerations for doing this on our computer infrastructure.
Can you do this on an iPad? Of course you can. The pupils don't know our WiFi password - at least they shoudn't; we deploy wifi settings by configuration profile - but blacklisting the MACs gives belt and braces security. We don't have any other open wifi networks visible from within our school but it's always possible that a pupil could enable tethering on their iPhone before handing the phone over at the start of the exam.
We counter this by keeping the phones in another part of the school from the exam room and using Kismet to check for the appearance of new APs before the exam starts. It would be very helpful if it were possible to disable connecting to arbitrary networks but that's not currently an option.
Because we need to print the papers at the end of the exam, we need some kind of networking capability so that the iPads can reach a networked printer. I set up a Mac mini with an ethernet connection to a printer. I then had the Mac create a wifi network and installed Printopia to make the printer visible to AirPrint.
This worked well enough but I found that the iPads occasionally failed to reconnect to the ad-hoc network after sleep. In future, I'll use a real Airport base station for this. The Mac mini had no connection to the Internet and was freshly reinstalled so that no additional software or content was available and all network services were off - apart from Printopia and the ad-hoc wifi network.
Network Security Whenever we talk about using computers in exams, the question of data security and computer isolation comes up.
I went through this in some detail and tried to lock down the iPads we're using for the exams as far as possible. Here's what I did. Firstly, take an iPad and restore it to factory settings. We used spare iPads for this but you could equally back up and erase the pupil's own iPad for the duration of the exams.
At this point, I put together a configuration profile for exam iPads and installed it via iPhone Configuration Utility. In the profile, I turned off the following and pretty much everything else I could turn off:You can now write directly on a page, make notes or highlight on the iPad while keeping the paper feel.
Combine the haptic feedback of paper with today’s connected digital tools. Makes writing on the iPad Pro with Apple Pencil feel like paper. If you’re looking for a great stylus for the iPad Pro or the iPad , the Apple Pencil is the way to go.
Even if the price seems high in the beginning, you won’t regret it. Apps like GoodNotes allow you to rest your hand on the screen while writing with the Apple Pencil for an even better note-taking experience. Yes like "Kahili" said, if you get an iPad, you can buy & download the app "pages" ($10) which is very similar to Microsoft Office and you can transfer your files and documents through email.
Here’s why the mini 4 might be the best iPad for you, too: It’s super-portable The big appeal of the iPad Pro to me is having a laptop replacement I can .
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Yes, you can trace through a piece of paper Scribbling on an iPad Pro through a standard sheet of computer paper. If you want to put a piece of paper on top of your iPad Pro and trace to draw, you.