In August, NCRA launched the long-awaited online skills testing platforms for candidates of the RPR, RMR, CRR, CRC, CBC, and CCP certifications. The program, which is a partnership between NCRA, Realtime Coach, and ProctorU, has been met with positive responses from many who have taken online tests.
Benefits of the new online testing program include a user-friendly and secure system, more testing opportunities annually, instantaneous results, greater affordability, and the convenience of testing in the location of the candidate’s choosing, including at home or in the office.
“NCRA takes seriously the need to develop and administer objective and valid exams that meet the needs of its members,” said Mike Nelson, CAE, NCRA CEO and Executive Director. “The new online platform for certification testing meets the needs of today’s member.”
“My testing experience was great,” said NCRA member Jessica Croxford, RPR, a freelance reporter from West Jordan, Utah, who recently took an online skills test. “It was a very easy and smooth process. I’ve been attempting the RPR for two years now, and being able to test without the stress of getting to the testing location and hauling a printer and all my equipment around was extremely helpful in doing so well on the test.”
Additional security measures required by the online system include candidates signing a mandatory confidentiality form that indicates that the subject and words of the test will not be disclosed to other candidates, and proctors that are connected to candidates in real time, with live audio and video connections that include a view and live feed of the candidate’s monitor through screen-sharing technology. Candidates are also required to use an external webcam to show that their workspace is secure by giving a 360-degree pan of the entire room and desk or workspace.
“It has been rewarding to see that the new online skills platform has been well received by members who have expressed appreciation for its flexibility and convenience. I strongly encourage every test taker to read through the information on our website before registering for the test as all the successful candidates have done, and to also take advantage of the free practice test with a proctor,” said Irene Cahill, NCRA Director of Professional Development Technology.
“I am so excited about the online testing. We didn’t have brick-and-mortar testing in my area, so it is a huge convenience to be able to do it online,” said Sherene Hunt, RPR, CRR, a freelance reporter from Victoria, B.C., Canada. “I thought the instructions were great and easy to follow — the CRR went very smoothly.”
Under the new online system, NCRA will allow candidates to take up to three skills tests per quarter in 2016, and up to four tests per quarter in 2017. For information about the schedule for the remainder of 2015, visit NCRA’s online skills testing schedule.