Remote Exams Best Practices

Group of individuals working together in group setting Group of individuals working together in group setting
 Two individuals reviewing a research document  Two individuals reviewing a research document
Two individuals conducting an experiment Two individuals conducting an experiment
 A student participating in a virtual reality experiment  A student participating in a virtual reality experiment
 Student wearing a virtual reality simulator conducting an experiment  Student wearing a virtual reality simulator conducting an experiment
 A student working with a staff member reviewing documents  A student working with a staff member reviewing documents
Equipment and writing down lab results Equipment and writing down lab results
 Girl holding a piece of research equipment in a lab  Girl holding a piece of research equipment in a lab
 Architecture students discussing a building model  Architecture students discussing a building model
 Poster presentation and discussion about research findings  Poster presentation and discussion about research findings
Female student playing violin while electrodes are on her arms Female student playing violin while electrodes are on her arms
 Student in front of a classroom discussing their instrument research  Student in front of a classroom discussing their instrument research
Female student conducting research in engineering Female student conducting research in engineering

As graduate education continues to evolve, flexibility in the examination structure of oral examinations is needed. Graduate Council adapted the following from the University of Minnesota as guidance in those situations. A roboust Remote Exams Best Practices Guide (PDF) provides additional recommendations, resources and information about digital signatures. 

Recommended Conditions

The following conditions are recommended in order to allow remote participation (e.g., telephone, video call, etc.) by graduate examination committee members and/or the student in the master's final oral examination, the doctoral preliminary oral examination (i.e., proposal meeting), or the doctoral final oral examination. The chair of the examining committee is responsible for guaranteeing that the conditions outlined below have been satisfied.

  • If the student requests to participate remotely, all members of the examining committee must agree in advance to allow the remote participation of the student.
  • All participants must be able to communicate with each other at all times during the examination.
  • Accessible versions of all materials must be available to all examination participants.
  • Provisions must be made for independent balloting during the initial vote by examiners.
  • Provisions must be made for signing the examination report form. Digital signatures are acceptable.
  • The chair of the examining committee must recess the examination immediately if any technical problems unduly interfere with the proceedings.
  • All participants must be notified ahead of time of the options for recessing the examination.

Best Practices

The following are guidelines for managing remote participation in ways that will ensure fair and correct procedures in doctoral and master's oral examinations.

  • If the student’s program is primarily online, verify the student’s identity through use of a Miami student ID or government issued ID.
  • All members of the committee and the student may participate remotely.
  • The student and advisor should agree upon the technology that should be used for the exam. Advanced testing of the technology should occur if possible.