Alamo Colleges District

Student: Respondus Monitor

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Respondus Monitor is the webcam feature for LockDown Browser that records students during online assessments. When this feature is enabled for a quiz, students are required to use a webcam and microphone with LockDown Browser. After the quiz is complete, your instructor can review details of the assessment, including the recorded videos.

How to Use Respondus Monitor

USING WITH A WEBCAM (Respondus Monitor):            

If an exam requires LockDown Browser and a webcam (Respondus Monitor), complete the following steps after starting your quiz:


1. First, review and agree to the Terms of Use.

2. The Webcam Check will confirm that your webcam and microphone are working properly. The first time the Webcam Check is performed on your computer, Adobe Flash Player may require you to select Allow and Remember.

3. The remaining steps of the Startup Sequence will depend on settings chosen by your instructor (not all are required). Follow the instructions and note your progress along the top of the screen.

Student Photo: The Student Photo setting takes a picture of you.

Show ID: If required by your instructor, you may be asked to show a form of picture ID to verify name and identity. (NOTE: Any photo ID is acceptable unless otherwise noted.)

Environment Check: Environment Check requires students to film their surroundings, based on the requirements you set by the instructor.

NOTE: At the end of the Environment Check, the webcam continues to record your actions prior to the test starting.

You may begin your exam after the Startup Sequence is complete. You cannot exit LockDown Browser until the test is submitted for grading.

Video Tutorial: How to Use Respondus Monitor for Students

What is the "Help Center" icon on the toolbar in Lockdown Browser for?

A new Help Center button appears on the toolbar in LockDown Browser, once a student has selected a course in the LMS.  

Help Center includes a “Webcam Check," a comprehensive “System Check” and “Knowledge Base” area.   Learn more about Help Center here.

Live Chat Help for Respondus Monitor (webcam proctoring)

Live chat help is available within LockDown Browser when using the webcam proctoring feature (sometimes called Respondus Monitor). Chat agents can assist you with pre-exam issues related to the webcam and microphone. 


Live chat is accessible from several places in LockDown Browser:

1. Within the the pre-exam steps. When working through the pre-exam steps for using a webcam with LockDown Browser, select "It's not working" at any time to access live chat.

2. Within Help Center. Select the "Need More help?" button.

Both options will walk you through a troubleshooter before beginning a chat with an agent.

How can I change my webcam?

If you have an external USB webcam that you desire to use, rather than the built in webcam on your computer, you can change the camera during the webcam check via the "change my webcam" link. You can also use this feature if your computer has front/rear facing cameras.

Clicking on that link will produce a list of the cameras that we have detected are connected to your computer.

Your face isn't showing clearly in the video

If you experience an error that reads "your face isn't showing clearly in the video," it may be related to the available memory on your computer.  

A computer that is running multiple applications simultaneously can experience a reduction in the available RAM (Random Access Memory). RAM is the physical hardware inside a computer that temporarily stores data, serving as the computer's "working" memory. A reduction in RAM can sometimes contribute to facial detection failure, even though your face may be showing clearly. In addition, the "Ok, Got it" button may be unresponsive when this error occurs.

If you are experiencing these symptoms, we recommend restarting your computer and shutting down all unnecessary applications and services. After doing this, restart LockDown Browser and attempt your exam again.

A minimum 4gb of available RAM is necessary when using LockDown Browser to take an exam that also uses a webcam.

Using the "Show Your Work" feature in Respondus Monitor

The "Show Your Work" feature allows students to upload hi-resolution images of worksheets they've prepared during their exam. If this setting is enabled by the instructor, the student will be given the opportunity to upload photos of their work immediately after they submit their exam.

Student Experience            

From the student's perspective, once they submit their exam, they will encounter a page that permits them to use their webcam to take photos of the work they desire to submit. They should point their webcam at the page, and once they're satisfied with the displayed image, click the "Take Photo" button. 

If satisfied with the photo, they can click the "Use this Photo" button. Otherwise, they can click "Try Again" to re-take the photo.

If multiple pages need to be submitted to the instructor, click the "Add Another Photo" button to repeat the process for the new photo(s). Otherwise, click the "Submit Photo(s)" button.

Respondus Monitor Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Does the webcam check use up some of the time allotted for the test?

A.  The webcam check sequence occurs before the test begins, so it doesn’t use any of the time allotted for the test.

However, once the exam begins, if the student exits for any reason before submitting, then desires to re-enter the exam, they will need to perform the webcam check again. Any LMS timer that might be running on the exam continues to count down during this process.


Q. If the Internet connection is lost during an exam, how does that affect the video?

A.  If the Internet (or wi-fi) connection is lost for an extended period of time, the student won’t be able to continue with the exam, just as if they were only using LockDown Browser. They would need to restart the browser and attempt the exam again.

However, if disconnections to the Internet are brief, Respondus Monitor will attempt to re-establish the connection every 5 seconds. If the Internet connection is re-established, the video for that portion of time will be missing in the video review. The instructor will see an automated note in the “Comments” section indicating that a break occurred in the video (a thumbnail will indicate where the break occurred). Students will likely be unaware of a brief interruption because the webcam will automatically re-establish the connection once the Internet connection is restored. 


Q. How much bandwidth is required for Respondus Monitor to run? 

A.  There isn’t a specific kb/s requirement for using a webcam with Respondus Monitor because the recording quality automatically adjusts when a slower connection is detected.

Generally speaking, if the user has a broadband connection that doesn’t result in significant delays when accessing the learning system, the bandwidth will be fine for Respondus Monitor. If using a shared Internet connection, students should ensure that others on the same connection don’t use bandwidth-hungry services during the exam (such as online movies, games, file sharing, etc.).

Below are some tips to help ensure the best results:

* If possible, plug an Ethernet cable into the computer to ensure the best possible network connection/speed. Otherwise, be as close to the Wi-Fi router as possible.

* Shut down all other applications other than LockDown Browser. This will help reduce the bandwidth being used by other applications running in the background.

* Avoid repeated saving of questions. A request is sent to the LMS every time a question is saved. If there are lots of these in a short time and the student doesn't have a lot of bandwidth, it's possible that all those requests will consume all the available bandwidth. This could result in a video interruption.

* A minimum 4gb of available RAM is necessary when using LockDown Browser to take an exam that also uses a webcam.


Q. Who can view videos of students taking exams? 

A. The videos can only be viewed within the online course itself. Only the instructor will have rights to view the videos, or someone with higher login credentials (e.g., LMS administrator).


Q. How long does it take for videos to appear in the LockDown Browser Dashboard? 

A. The average time for an exam video to be processed and available to an instructor is 12 hours. The time can be greater during periods of high volume, and may take up to 48 hours if the video has processing issues. During periods of low volume, the time to process the video is roughly equal to the actual length of the video. 


Q. What resources are available to learn how to use Respondus Monitor? 

A.  Quick Start Guides for instructors and students, as well as demo videos and other resources, are available at:


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