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Practice window

The practice window is an opportunity for schools to use the e-exam system before end-of-year exams.

The practice window will take place from Monday 10 August to Friday 11 September 2020.

While students can access past and sample e-exams at any time, during this window the system will be locked-down and provide a closer experience to what they will have during their final exams, all while being fully supported by us.

It's specifically designed to assess your school's technical readiness and exam day preparedness and familiarise students with the e-exam system.

If your school is new to e-exams, let us know by 26 June when you plan to use the practice window. This will allow us to best support you.

Details about nominations and training (e.g. for exam invigilators) and other information will be provided as the year progresses.


Is participation in the practice window compulsory?

Participation in the practice window is not compulsory. However, our experience in the past two years has demonstrated that schools found the opportunity to test their technical and operational readiness invaluable in their preparations for the final examinations.

Do schools need to register their practice times?

If your school is new to e-exams this year, please advise the SACE Board of the date/s you will be using the practice window by emailing askSACE. This will allow the SACE Board to monitor your progress during your scheduled practice window activities.

If your school has previously participated in e-exams there is no need to register your practice times. The SACE Board will provide support to schools during the examination period (between 9 am and 5 pm (ACDT), Monday to Friday). 

Will training be provided prior to the practice window?

Yes, phase one training on role clarification and task planning for SACE coordinators and IT managers will be available in June, with phases two and three online training available during July. All training is delivered in PLATO, the SACE Board’s learning management system. It is essential all exam day staff participate in the training prior to the practice window.

How do I access the practice window?

Schools can determine when they will use the practice window (between the practice window dates identified above) and how this will be used by their students. Instructions will be provided to schools on how to access the system, generate student labels and access codes. Schools will be able to do so as soon as the practice window opens.

Students are only able to access the practice window if and when their school chooses to utilise the practice window. 

Will the SACE Board provide more practice windows later in the year?

The SACE Board has extended the period of the practice window to allow schools more flexibility in scheduling their practice activity (see the practice window dates identified above).  There will only be one practice window available. 

Can we run multiple practice exams during the window?

Yes, the number of exams and the duration of the exam you conduct during the window is up to you. 

It is recommended that schools don’t wait until the end of the window to run their practice window exam(s). Having enough time to undertake a second run will allow for ironing out any issues that might come up during the initial exam undertaken in the practice window.

Student login

Schools are encouraged to get enrolments in these subjects recorded early in Schools Online. For those enrolments that are in Schools Online by the date of the practice window, these students will be able to log in using their SACE student registration number. A limited number of ‘guest learner’ accounts will be provided to allow for changes in enrolments. 

What support will the SACE Board provide during the practice window?

The askSACE team will be on hand to provide support during the practice window and can be contacted on +61 8 8115 4712 or askSACE@sa.gov.au (between 9 am and 5 pm (ACDT), Monday to Friday).

Can student responses and results be obtained from the practice window?

The responses that students enter while using practice window are not available to students or teachers for marking or provision of results. The practice window e-exam is non-subject specific, therefore is not suitable for use as a trial exam. The practice window is primarily designed to be used to test schools’ readiness in undertaking the end of year e-exams. 

Can we access the practice examinations outside of the practice window?

No, the access window for the practice window exam is fixed, however a range of familiarisation activities, with questions based on past exams are available on the SACE website. 

Can teachers create their own exams for students to use during the practice window?

No, the current licensing and commercial arrangements the SACE Board has with the provider of the e-exam system do not allow for use of the system by anyone other than the SACE Board for the purposes of delivering examinations. Online assessment tools are being used by some teachers and we encourage you to connect with your colleagues to see how they are incorporating electronic assessments into their teaching.

Will the SACE Board provide exam materials (e.g. attendance slips) for the practice window?

No, the SACE Board will not provide exam materials for the practice window. All materials required by students to participate in the practice exam will be made available through the e-exam system.

Are the e-exams available in the practice window similar to what students can expect in the end of year final exams?

The practice window provides a non-subject specific exam for students to practice undertaking an e-exam. The content of the practice window exam is the same for each available subject and includes all the features and functionality that students might see in their end of year e-exam.  For this reason, to support multimedia content in the practice exam, it is important that students have access to headphones that work with their device during the practice exam. 

The practice window exam is shorter than a typical end of year live exam. This has been designed to allow schools to fit the practice window exam exercise into a regular school class session.