In 2020, we introduced an online version of the Part 1 exam which is taken using a proctoring service. This is available for candidates within the UK and Republic of Ireland.
Delivery is the same as the centre based exam in terms of content and format, so you should prepare in the same way as you normally would. Details on the Part 1 format can be found here.
How it works
The exam is taken either at home or in a quiet office space via the Surpass assessment system, where you will be monitored by an online invigilator in real time (referred to as a proctor). You will also be recorded and footage will be held to review later, if required.
Your IT set up
You will need a PC or laptop with audio enabled, and a microphone in order to sit a remote invigilated test. You must also use the latest version of Google Chrome. Chromebooks are suitable to use for this exam. Lenovo Ideapads may not be supported. If you are using a desktop PC, you will need a separate movable webcam.
You can use the following websites to check your equipment is working correctly:
- Microphone: onlinemictest.com
- Webcam: onlinemictest.com/webcam-test/ or webcammictest.com/
For more information on your IT set up please see Section 1 of The Candidate User Guide.
The online practice test can be taken here. Please click 'ok' on the first page and 'confirm' on the next page and accept the terms. The online practice test does not supply the answers at the end. For answers, please try the sample questions below.
You can also access the full set of sample questions and the answers here.
Before the exam
Prior to the exam you will receive three sets of emails. The first set will consist of two emails, one for each paper, containing a link to perform your system check. It is recommended you complete the system check 48 hours in advance of your exam. You will be sent another set of reminder emails for both papers if you have not completed your checks. Once they have been completed, you will be sent your final set of emails which contain a link to your exam. Again, you will receive one email for each paper.
Ensure you are using the latest version of Google Chrome. You can find this information by navigating to Help > About Google Chrome.
You must also enable pop-ups. To do this, go to Settings > Site Settings > Pop-ups and redirects > Add https://surpass.proctorexam.com to your list of websites that allow pop-ups.
If you encounter any technical difficulties, you can access chat support in the bottom right-hand corner of your screen.
For more information on setting up your equipment please see Section 2 of The Candidate User Guide.
For details on how to set up your equipment for your exam, watch this video.
Taking the exam
Before you start your exam, you will be required to complete a number of checks including an ID and environment check. These will normally be completed within 10 minutes, please be assured that your exam timer will only start once you have started your exam. Your proctor will guide you through this process.
The third email you receive will contain the link to your exam. You will be sent a separate email for each paper. Before each paper, select Launch your exam now and follow the ProctorExam on-screen instructions. Press Next Step once you have completed each step.
If you encounter any technical difficulties, you will be able to access online chat support. You will find this in the bottom right hand corner of your screen.
Bathroom breaks are allowed if necessary. If you do take a bathroom break, please message the proctor first. You do not need to wait for the proctor to reply. The exam clock will not be stopped.
Finishing the exam
Once you have finished, select 'Complete the exam' within the open ProctorExam and then close down the exam system. You do not need to wait for the full three hours to be up.
Specific rules have been introduced for this exam. To avoid being interrupted by invigilators you should sit the exam in a suitable environment where there will be no disruptions. Any of the following violations will be recorded by the invigilator and reported back:
- Looking at a mobile phone or tablet
- Wearing earplugs or headphones (this will be checked by invigilators during the registration process)
- Wearing any clothing with the ability to hide materials, i.e. hooded jumper (this will also be checked during the registration process)
- Wearing sunglasses (unless permitted for medical reasons) or smart glasses
- Wearing a watch
- Continuously looking around in any direction
- Leaving the room without permission from the invigilator
- Looking at hands or wrists
- Accessing web pages
- Accessing other applications, such as Word/Excel or Windows Explorer
- Taking screenshots of exam content
- Other people entering the room
- Talking to anyone outside the room
- Using multiple screens
- Text books or notes in exam environment (blank paper for note taking is permitted but must be destroyed at the end of the exam)
- Using a calculator
- Room is too dark
- Webcam on PC/laptop angled up or having face obscured
- Vaping or smoking
The full list of our regulations and procedures for exams can be found here.