That is a very timely question. Just this morning I am nervously watching the logs on a new OU Moodle server where a handful of students are taking the the first online exam we have run on Moodle. We have done lots of testing to convince ourselves it will work, but I will still be more relaxed come lunchtime (I hope ).
Anyway, having looked at the various options, we decided to use SEB, but we are not using it yet. Allow me to explain.
There are basically two choices for which computers you use for these exams.
- Bring the students into a computer lab that you control, where you have installed and configured the secure browser; or
- Have the students install the secure browser on their own laptop. This is often referred to as BYOD (bring your own device).
SEB was originally built with scenario 1 in mind. In that situation, it works really well. We tried with the latest version 1.9.1.
The problem is, we need to use scenario 2. In an in-house pilot (OU staff taking an exam as if they were a student) too many people had difficulties installing 1.9.1 on their own laptops. Also, there are security issues with that.
Now the SEB already know this, and have been working for a while on SEB version 2, which is designed to address scenario 2. That they have planned looks like a really good solution, but it is not finished yet.
So, for our current exams, which just involve a very small number of students, we are using a combination of scenario 1, students come to an OU exam centre and use our computers, and scenario 2 with students being very closely monitored (e.g. disabled student with special dispensation to take the exam at home) and just using an ordinary web browser, not SEB.
One thing to watch out for with any secure browser solution. It is all very well for the browser software to lock-down the student's computer. But when they are finished, is their computer completely unlocked? And what about exceptional situations like the computer crashing and being rebooted without properly quitting the secure browser, or running out of power? SEB copes well here. At worst you have to run the browser again and then quit it again property. Other browsers we tried sometimes left the student's computer in a mess. Not acceptable.
The one option that you don't have on your list is EExam http://www.eexams.org. That is not suitable for using with Moodle, but it is an approach worth knowing about. http://www.transformingassessment.com/events_13_march_2013.php