Overview of the Online Proctoring Market
Meazure Learning acquires Examity, but it's the market context that matters
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Meazure Learning this morning announced the acquisition of the online proctoring platform Examity. This is an interesting move on its own, but it is better viewed in the context of the overall online proctoring market.
Overview of the market for online proctoring
Online proctoring has been around since at least 2011, but, prior to the start of the pandemic in March 2020, it could best be described as an emergent market. In the higher education space, online proctoring mostly served a small fully-online learning sector and was dwarfed by the far larger in-person testing business run by companies like Pearson. There was also a market for online proctoring outside of higher education where it was starting to be used by corporations, governments, and professional bodies interested in running exams remotely, but this too was on a fairly small scale.
This situation changed with the pandemic. Suddenly colleges and universities had to scramble to offer quizzes and exams online and had to find a way to do so securely. Institutions needed to know who was taking the exam and whether there were indications of cheating. Some schools, like the Medical School at Imperial College London, went the route of open book exams, relying on a revised assessment design and limiting time to keep malfeasance to a minimum. But most colleges and universities acquired at least one and sometimes two or three online proctoring solutions.
The institutions acquired multiple solutions for different use cases (e.g., low stakes versus high stakes exams),and an already crowded market became even more so with the entrance of new online proctoring solutions. The market can be divided into four basic types of solutions as shown in the diagram below. This is not a complete listing of vendors, of which there are close to 100. This is only a partial listing of some representative vendors.
There are some clear trends in the market.
Mergers & acquisitions - There are a lot of companies offering products in the online proctoring space. In the late teens and early in the pandemic a number of new providers entered the market. Since that time we have seen a few cases of vendors seeking to expand their geographies (for example Sumadi), but mostly it has been a story of market consolidation by means of mergers and acquisitions. This trend started prior to the pandemic but has picked up in scale and impact with the massive changes in technology funding. Some of the key transactions include the following:
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