Students work at the newly created final exam testing lab in Botsford/Swinford Residence Hall. This is the first time Ball State has created a testing lab in student housing. Konnor Miller, Photo Provided
Final exam testing lab appears in unlikely place
Rolling out of bed. Walking downstairs. And taking a final exam.
Sounds crazy, but now students may be able to take their big tests in their pajamas.
That is because Ball State Technology Support has added an additional testing lab at Botsford/Swinford Residence Hall for finals week.
Instead of walking to the Robert Bell building or the L.A. Pittenger Student Center, students in the Johnson East Building will now be able to take their final exams from the comfort of their own residence hall.
This is the first time Ball State has had a testing facility located inside a residence hall, and Botsford/Swinford is the only residence hall to be tested so far.
Marchal Hudson, assistant director of Unified Technology Support said the goal of the additional testing lab is to help students have a successful exam period in an environment that is convenient and free of stressors.
“We wanted to ensure that students had access to testing facilities so they could take their exams comfortably. And what place better to do that then where they reside?” Hudson said. “While we offer testing labs in the academic buildings, we also thought this might be an opportunity for students to have testing access in a place where they live and it’s comfortable, but also it would be conducive to their testing preferences.”
The testing lab will be open Monday through Friday and monitored from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.
For Alexis Miller, a Botsford/Swinford resident and freshman business administration major, the addition of a testing lab in her hall will save her a lot of time.
“It’ll be nice having a testing lab downstairs. Now, after spending time studying for finals in my room or the lounges, I can just go downstairs, take a test and then go back to my room,” Miller said. “It’ll be very convenient.”
Laura Petty, director of Unified Technology Support, said the Botsford/Swinford testing lab will benefit other students outside of the hall as well.
“One of the nice things about the lab that we chose is it is going to be very convenient for students who live in Botsford/Swinford and for residence halls that are close, but it’s also very conveniently located near commuter parking, and so we’re hopeful that students who don’t live in the residence halls will be also able to take advantage of testing in that location,” Petty said.
After looking at multiple residence halls on campus with representatives from Housing and Residence Life, Petty said they determined the proximity to three large residence halls and the commuter parking seemed like a great fit.
Sarah Foster, a junior public relations major who lives off-campus across Bethel Avenue, said the new amenity will be her go-to for finals.
“It’s not too far from my apartment. I only have one final, but I’ll for sure utilize Johnson’s new testing lab,” Foster said. “With the temperatures starting to lower drastically, it will be great to not have to walk so far onto campus. I don’t have a commuter pass, so Johnson (East) being close is very convenient.”
Although he finds it different, junior telecommunications major and commuter student Harrison MacKay said he thinks those who live there will get more use out of it than anyone else.
“I will more than likely try to use it, if it isn’t full. It’s nice that it is so close, but I feel like the residents in the dorm will get more of a use out of it than I will,” MacKay said. “I usually pick what testing lab I go to by figuring out how full it is.”
This testing lab will be in addition to the existing computer lab already existing in Johnson East, which will be left open for students to finish their projects and papers before the end of the semester.
“I’m really anxious to hear feedback from the students and how they felt the experience of being able to test in the residence hall went,” Petty said. “Because one of the things that we really strive to do is to make things convenient, make them easier for the students. And we all know that testing time is very stressful, and if this helps eliminate their stress and make things easier we will be very happy to hear that.”
In addition to the testing lab at Botsford/Swinford 171, there are additional testing labs located in Bracken Library, Robert Bell 134 and the Student Center.