In the days leading up to your exam

Here are some recommendations of things you should to prepare for your ExamSoft digital exam in the days before your exam:

  • If you haven't already done so, download ExamSoft’s app Examplify: 
    How to download ExamSoft’s app Examplify
  • If you haven't already done so, do the two mandatory no-stakes Preparation Exams – the Computer Compatibility Preparation Exam (to ensure your technology will work with the app) and the Content and Features Preparation exam (to practice using the app). You can do these exams up to 99 times each (including the first time) if you want more practise and it will be available until the end of the Semester One examination period:
    Practicing with Examplify before exams
  • Check your space meets exam requirements:
    Where will I sit my digital exams and what does that space need?
  • Visit the University of Otago’s Examinations page
  • Ensure your laptop/desktop computer’s camera will be pointed towards your face throughout the exam, remove any cover from the camera, and make sure the room will have good lighting (the light on your face should be brighter than the light behind you)
  • Check that the date and time on your computer are accurate so you get your password and start your exam at the correct time. Verify your laptop/desktop computer has the correct date and time set (e.g. is set to New Zealand time), by:
    • Windows: double-clicking the clock in the lower-right corner of the desktop
    • Mac: single clicking the clock in the upper-right corner of the desktop.
      All dates and times are New Zealand times so you must be aware of time zone differences if you are outside New Zealand: Sitting a digital exam in a different time zone to New Zealand 
      If you have not already notified the Examinations Office that you are overseas, do this as soon as possible by emailing
  • Look for an email to your University student email address from advising that your exam is ready to download. It will be available for downloading 96 hours before your exam, but you must download it at least 24 hours before your exam starts or the exam file will no longer be available. (You will not be able to start your exam or see the questions until you receive a password). 
    Downloading digital exams in Examplify

Note: Download the exam as soon as possible to ensure you can get help if needed before the actual exam. You cannot reply to the email, so if you experience problems, please contact AskOtago, available seven days a week between 7am and 11pm New Zealand time:

Tel +64 3 479 7000 or 0800 80 80 98
Enquiry form
Chat with an AskOtago Service Representative

Check your exam room setup

  • Ensure all cables (e.g. power cord, external mouse and/or keyboard) are securely connected to your laptop/desktop computer
  • Turn on your laptop/desktop computer
  • Check the power indicator light shows your laptop/desktop computer is receiving power
  • Pair Bluetooth keyboards before launching the Examplify app
  • Remove from your room:
    • Your mobile phone, and turn it to airplane mode or off to avoid distractions and breaching exam regulations
    • Headphones/ear buds/headsets etc.
    • Your watch, smartwatch, or any other watch-like device 
    • Audio players
    • Any Wi-Fi capable devices (such as iPads and tablets etc.) 

Before you start your exam

If you want to ensure your internet connection is not interrupted or slowed while you are downloading or uploading your exam, ask other people in your house not to watch streaming services or download large files on the same internet connection during your exam.

You are encouraged to go to the toilet before the exam as any toilet break will be flagged as an integrity breach so the video of you in the period following your return will be carefully analysed. If you do need to use the bathroom during your exam, you should signal to your web camera before going by making a (capital) 'T' with your hands (note that this is also the process normally used during physical exams held on-campus).

Have any drinks of water or snacks before you start your exam, not during your exam. If you have a medical condition that requires you to eat or drink, please contact the University’s Disability Information & Support Services. They are available Monday to Friday between 8:30am and 5pm:

Tel +64 3 479 8235
Fax +64 3 479 5873

Watch out for an email to your University student email address from approximately five minutes before your exam – this will contain the password for your exam. Every exam will have a different password and you will need the password to start your exam.

Once you get to the first question on your exam, the timer for your exam will start and you can only work on the exam – Examplify blocks access to the internet and access to all your apps and files on your laptop/desktop computer.

You will only be able to download exams for classes you are officially enrolled in.

When you submit your exam, your internet connection will be automatically restored, and the completed exam and the invigilation/supervision file will automatically upload to a secure server. You cannot reopen the exam. Do not disconnect from the internet until both your exam file and the invigilationfile have uploaded – this could take about 6-15 minutes under normal circumstances. If your internet speed is particularly slow, it could take a lot longer. If your internet connection is lost, the exam will continue uploading once it is re-established from the point the upload was interrupted.

Uploading Examplify digital exam

The completed exam and monitoring file is automatically deleted from your laptop/desktop computer when it is uploaded at the end of your exam.

Further information

Otago blog: ExamSoft Digital Exam

Last updated 18/05/2020 01.21 PM

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