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Law School Registrar

General Instructions for Paperless Exams







If computers are allowed for an examination, students who wish to use a computer will be expected to register for the Examplify computer software and use that system for the exam.  Any student who entered school prior to Fall 2009  and who has a computer whose operating system is not compatible with Examplify will have to petition the Associate Dean of Student Affairs office for permission to use a computer without Examplify. Contact Associate Dean Libby Davis,  Students who wish to use a computer but not use Examplify must make a specific request citing the reasons the computer is not able to use Examplify.


The rules for each individual exam are posted on the Authorized Material listing on the  Authorized Exam and Materials page. Click on the course title, if underlined, and you will be shown the authorized materials and any special instructions for the exam.


Well before the third month of the semester, if you feel your computer needs checking, make an appointment with the Computer Lab staff.  The sooner you see them, the earlier they can assist you to be sure your computer has no virus or potential problem.


Computer problems that prevent you from completing the exam on the computer must be brought to the attention of the Registrar after the exam is over.

If you experience technical problems, and are unable to get your computer to reboot within  7 minutes, you will be locked out ExamSoft, and you must finish the exam by writing it in a blue book.  Blue books are in each exam room. 

After the examination, a student who has experienced technical problems of any kind that have affected the completion of the examination, should report the problem immediately to the Registrar’s office.  If necessary, the computing services department can check the computer for problems.  However, in order to do so, the student might be required to leave the computer at the Registrar’s office. The Computing Services department will check the problem as soon as possible. 


All exam questions will be given out in paper form.  A professor giving a multiple choice exam may opt to deliver the questions on-screen in Examplify.  Except in those instances, you will either be given your exam questions in paper form by the professor or proctor in a scheduled exam, or you will pick up the questions at the registrar’s window if the exam is unscheduled. 

When you have the exam in hand and either:

                         Have been told by a professor or proctor to start the exam,

                         Or, You are ready to start your unscheduled exam,

you will open the exam on your computer.  The first thing you will see are instructions.  Read the instructions carefully.

At the end of the instructions you will see a place to enter a password.  Each exam will have a unique password that you have to use in order to open the exam and start typing your answers. This password is NOT the same as the password you use to open the ExamSoft program.  You must use the exam password to open the exam.  The exam password is on the cover sheet of the exam.

             Scheduled Exams: The professor or proctor will tell you when to enter the exam password and begin.  If students in a class are going to different rooms, you will be told before you leave the room when you may open the exam questions, and start the exam in ExamSoft. The end time will be the same, within a few seconds, for everyone taking a scheduled exam.

             Unscheduled Exams: When you are ready to begin the exam, enter the password and open up the exam in ExamSoft.  DO NOT wait to open the exam until you have read the exam.  Open the hard copy of the questions as soon as you have started the exam in ExamSoft.  Once you use the password to open the exam, and press the “begin” button on the exam page, you are considered to have begun the exam, and the Examplify exam timer will begin. 

             If you are picking up the exam questions for an unscheduled exam from the registrar, the envelope with the exam questions will be time-stamped when you check the exam out, and time-stamped again when you turn it in to the registrar.  This is separate from the timing process of the exam in ExamSoft.  Be sure you close out the exam in ExamSoft BEFORE you return the questions to the registrar.  The time stamp for when you turn in the questions to the registrar after you finish the exam must be LATER than the time you clocked out of the exam in ExamSoft.  Time spent uploading the exam will not count against the time you spend on the exam in ExamSoft.   

             You will be allowed an additional ten minutes beyond the time allowed for the exam to clock the exam in and out.  This time does not count against the time you have to take the exam.  The time you take writing your exam is the time as it is counted by the Examplify computer program — the time you are actually typing your answers.  This means you should have enough time to get to and from the registrar’s office and to upload the exam at the end of the exam before you turn the questions back in.  HOWEVER, if you have trouble uploading the exam, go ahead and turn the questions back in to the registrar.  Time spent trying to upload will not be included in the ExamSoft count of your time spent typing your answer.

             Honor Code Violations – Caution:  Retaining the paper copy of the questions beyond the time limit is a violation of the honor code.  If you keep the questions overtime, this will be reported to the professor along with the amount of time you were overtime.  Also, having an “end time” recorded in ExamSoft that is after the time you turned the exam questions back in to the registrar is considered an Honor Code violation, and will be reported to the professor.  See detailed information about the Honor Code and exams on the General Exam Information page.

             This means you must open the exam in ExamSoft at the same time you open up the questions.  You will go overtime if you spend time reading the exam questions before you open the exam on your computer, unless the professor specifically instructs you otherwise.  The amount of time you are allowed to have the questions is meant to be just enough time to get them from the registrar’s office to your computer, and back to the registrar after you have finished the exam. 


             You are taking an unscheduled exam and you have 3 hours in which to take it. 

             You have ten minutes TOTAL travel time. 

             You check out the exam at 1:30pm.  This means you must turn it in by 4:40pm.

This means that if you go to the exam room, open the exam, read it for 30 minutes, then open the exam on your computer, then take 3 hours to write the exam, you will turn it in at 5:00pm and you will be 25 minutes late.

 You are expected to open the exam in the computer at the same time you open the exam questions even though you will not begin writing immediately.


All exams are processed by the TIPS staff and turned over to the professor.  A cover sheet with the exam number and the name of the class is automatically generated for each exam.  All exams are printed in the same font with the same margins.  If a professor has a page limit, ExamSoft tracks word counts and character counts. The character count appears at the bottom of your screen in ExamSoft.

You will be told in the exam instructions at the time you take the exam if there is a character or word count.  When tracking the character count, the character count that appears at the bottom of your screen DOES count spaces and returns, so you may want to use returns sparingly.

Character Counts

10 pages double-spaced = 22,000 characters

12 pages double-spaced = 26,400 characters

15 pages double-spaced = 33,000 characters


1 line = 100 characters

5 lines, double-spaced = 500 characters

10 lines, double-spaced = 1000 characters  

 Word Counts

                 330 words per double-spaced page with 1” margins. 

A professor may choose EITHER a character count or a word count, but not both.  

Blue Book Conversion

10 double-spaced ExamSoft pages = 12 single-spaced blue book pages

12 double-spaced ExamSoft pages = 14 single-spaced blue book pages

15 double-spaced ExamSoft pages = 18 single-spaced blue book pages

 Limits on Individual Questions

                 A character count or a word count can be set for individual questions or for the whole exam.  Make sure you know which the professor is asking.


 There is a handy list of exam tips on the ExamSoft web site.  If you want to know more about how to copy and paste, setting alarms, and how to use the word count or character count functions – among other things.

For additional help with Examplify,  please contact Examplify Support


If you have any questions about this procedure, please contact Computing Services, or 503-768-6644. Computing Services is unable to assist with technical questions once you have started your exam and during the time you are taking the exam.

NOTE:  Questions about Examplify and technical assistance can be found on ExamSoft’s web site. You can contact their personnel directly via the web or call them at (866)429-8889.