Department of Mathematics, University at Buffalo

UB Math Exams: Student's Guide

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2-device proctored exams

This guide provides instructions for taking proctored exams in courses offered by the UB Math Department. The setup of the exam requires students to use two devices:

Math Department staff members proctor the exams via students’ smartphone/tablet cameras.

Software installation and setup

Zoom app

In order to join a proctored exam meeting you will need to have the Zoom app installed on your smartphone or tablet. This app is available for both Android and iOS devices.

To access exam Zoom meetings you need to be signed into Zoom with your UB account. If you are signed in with another account, you can follow these steps to switch to your UB account:

  • In the Zoom app, sign out from the non-UB account (go to Settings > My Profile, then scroll down to the bottom).
  • Click Sign In and then choose SSO where it says SIGN IN WITH.
  • Type buffalo where it says Enter your company domain.
  • On the next screen log in using your UB username and password (Duo will be required for this step).
Here is a short video demonstrating the above steps.

Microsoft Office Lens

At the conclusion of the exam you will need to scan pages with your solutions using your phone or tablet, and save the scan as a PDF file. Install the Microsoft Office Lens scanning app on your smartphone or tablet. The app is available for both Android and iOS devices. If needed, refer to the online instructions on how to use Office Lens on Android and iOS. Practice using this app to create PDF files, in particular learn how to create PDFs consisting on multiple pages. Here is a short video demonstrating the use of Office Lens.


Gradescope is where you will be submitting the exam for grading, (and also where you will go to see your score once the exam is graded).

  • Set up your Gradescope account following the instructions in this guide to Gradescope.
  • Practice uploading to Gradescope. Your course instructor will likely give you a brief assignment for practice. Make sure you match each page of the file you upload to Gradescope with the appropriate question number.
Here is a short video demonstrating the process of uploading your work to Gradescope and matching pages with questions.

The exam PIN

To access the proctored Zoom meeting and the exam questions you will need the exam PIN. You received the PIN in an email from prof. John Ringland ( which was sent on February 9. A few days before the exam make sure that you have the PIN. If you can’t find it, contact the course instructor. For each math course you are taking this semester, you will use the same PIN for all exams.

Keep the exam PIN private. Sharing it with other persons will be considered as an act of Academic Dishonesty. It can also implicate you in acts of dishonesty committed by others.

Your exam workspace

Your exam workspace should be in a quiet location with no one else around. Remember: this is an exam, you will need to concentrate!

During the exam, you are not allowed to use any calculators or consult any references (e.g. cheat sheets, formula sheets, note cards, textbooks, websites, etc) unless it is specified otherwise by the course instructor. Also, you must not wear headphones or earbuds. Here is a short video demonstrating proper workspace setup.

Here is what you will need to take the exam:
  1. A computer with an internet connection.
  2. A smartphone or tablet with an internet connection, and with Zoom and Office Lens apps installed. Make sure that your device is fully charged or it is connected to a charger.
  3. A Gradescope account.
  4. UB student ID (or a government issued photo ID).
  5. Your exam PIN.
  6. Pen or pencil.
  7. Blank paper.
  8. Desk or table clear of any items, besides those listed above.

Zoom device setup

Your Zoom device must use the front-facing (selfie) camera for the Zoom meeting (so that the screen is facing towards you). The device must be positioned in the landscape mode and placed about 4 ft (120 cm) away from your work area and about 10 inches (20 cm) above the work surface. It must receive a clear view of:

  • your computer screen and keyboard (and mouse if any)
  • your face and your hands
  • your entire writing surface and the papers you are writing on.
Here is a short video about getting your zoom device positioned properly.

Correct camera view

This is how that the view from a camera should look. The student, the entire work surface, and the computer screen are clearly visible.

Examples of incorrect camera views

Most of the issues illustrated below can be fixed by placing the camera further away from you.

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Work surface not visible.

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Camera too close.

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Part of the computer screen not visible.

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Face not visible.

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Computer screen not in the picture.

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Video oriented vertically. To fix this, pick up the phone, wave it around a bit, and set it back down.

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Camera oriented vertically, partial view of the monitor and work surface only.

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Headphones/earbuds are not allowed.

Taking the exam

1. Join the Zoom proctored meeting

Note. When you try to join the meeting you may see the message "The host has another meeting in progress.". This simply means that the proctor has not started the meeting yet - wait a moment and try again.

2. Follow the proctor’s instructions

3. Access the exam questions

4. Answer the exam questions

5. Checkout

Once you are finished answering the questions:

  • Make a stack of all pages of your work in preparation for showing them to the Zoom device.
  • Use the raise hand feature to let the proctor know that you are ready to leave the exam, and wait for the proctor to call upon you.
  • Move your Zoom device directly over your stack of pages, and repeatedly remove the top page until you've shown the whole stack Pause on each page for about 1 second, so the camera can focus.
  • When you have completed this procedure, leave the Zoom meeting and proceed to Step 6.
Here is a short video demonstrating the checkout process.


The following behavior will considered an act of Academic Dishonesty with serious consequences (such as an F on the exam or a course failure):

  • Leaving the Zoom meeting without checking out.
  • Uploading to Gradescope any page that was not shown to the Zoom Device during checkout or was subsequently altered.

6. Submit your work to Gradescope

Once you exit the Zoom Proctoring Session you will have 10 minutes to upload a single PDF file of your work to Gradescope. Exams will not be accepted after this deadline. Do not write or alter anything on your pages once you leave the Zoom proctored meeting.

Here is a short video demonstrating the process of uploading your work to Gradescope and matching pages with questions. Gradescope information is also available here .

Viewing graded exams

To check your exam score, log in to Gradescope and click on a course tile. This will bring you to a page with a list of assignments for this course. Assignments which have been already graded will show your score in the Status column.

Respondus Lockdown Browser

Some instructors may choose to allow you to access the exam only via Respondus Lockdown Browser. If your course instructor tells you that this is the case, install the Respondus LockDown Browser on your computer. You need to use the installer link below, as it will install the version of Respondus that has been preconfigured to work with UBLearns.


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Department of Mathematics, University at Buffalo

  • Version: 2020.11.05