Like most of you, I’m a big fan of the “Tried and Tested Podcast” from PSI services.  In an episode from October, PSI president Janet Garcia said:

“The only thing we’re trying to test is knowledge and competence.  We’re not trying to test their digital literacy skills.  We’re not trying to test their patience.”

I like that last sentence a lot.  When trying to account for why certain language tests are gaining popularity, it’s important to remember how desirable it is to provide a smooth and seamless testing experience.  It’s been about four years since the jump to at-home testing and while everyone is getting better at it, many testing firms still struggle to do this. Indeed, test-taker patience is often tested.

I still hear stories about proctors forgetting to turn off their microphones, forcing test-takers to listen to their conversations.

I still hear about room scans being requested at the most inopportune times (and without the test being paused).

People still fail pre-test checks because one major proctoring service still doesn’t account for how modern Apple computers utilize RAM.

Note-taking is often clunky and awkward.

The list goes on.  I’ve talked about all this before, so I won’t repeat myself.  But, yeah, I love that line about not testing the test-taker’s patience. It’s so incredibly relevant.  If you want people to take your test, make the test experience as pleasant as you can.

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