PHP+MySQL based Online Examination System with Power Failure Handling and Dropbox Capability

INTRODUCTION Examination is the best way to test one’s ability of learning. With the rapid development of computer, web and networks technologies, educational organizations replace their manual examination system with the web-based examination system which reduce the financial cost on exams and also reduce the burden of the faculty and administration. For this purpose many online examination systems were introduced in the market by researchers such as Ji Wen in [1] presented the design and implementation of PHP and MySQL web-based examination system which consist of three primary parts including student, teachers and administrators, these were introduced and analyzed in detail , Huiqiang Lu in [2] presented the development of online examination system based on J2EE, Chen Xiangjun in [3] presented the development of common examination system , Sophal Chao in [4] discussed the examination system in which teacher control student examinations and there will be sharing of information between departments and other interested groups, JunJie Zhang in [5] elaborated the design and realization process of intelligentized online testing system based on templates. There are many system introduced which play a supportive role during examination process such as G.Vikram in [6] discussed Network Failure handling in Web based online Exam system developed in ASP.NET, Lio Siyao in [7] discussed potential ways of cheating during examination process of online examination and shortage of existing online examination system’s anticheating measures, Monica Farrow in [8] discussed the online programming examination which is used to assess undergraduates who had learned java for two terms, GUO Ping in [9] discussed the design and implementation of online scoring system. Every system has its own uniqueness but there are certain shortcomings such as power failure and rigidness in the system from student perspective which were not discussed in any of those systems which are crucial for a reliable, trustful, flexible and user friendly online exam system. As power failure is a major problem in developing countries like Pakistan, so for large scale examination such as universities such problem should be solved first and also to provide a natural behavior to the system such as solving of questions based on its difficulty level dropbox is introduced in the system to give student selectivity choice, to give more time to difficult question as compare to easy question according to the given time. These two shortcomings are addressed in this research. The proposed system is divided into four functional modules; these are user management module, content management module, examination management module and security module.

USER MANAGMENT MODULE User management has a great importance in smooth running of the system. There are mostly three categories of users that interact with these types of systems, if the system doesn’t know the rights of a user associated with a specific category then the system will be vulnerable to failure. So this module divide the users into three categories on the basis of rights i.e. administrator, teacher and student. a) Administrator This category of user has the highest level of rights on the system as shown in table.1. administrator can activate and deactivate the accounts of teachers and students, as the registration is open for both teachers and students , therefore it is necessary for the administrator to check the information given by user, if the given information is valid then activate account else delete account. another activity that admin can perform is of addition, deletion and updation of subjects, during addition different attributes of the subjects are set i.e. total time, total questions, marks per question, relative department of the subject and subject status update. Subject status update is an important right because students have permanent accounts so the paper status control is important, paper can only be shown at a specific date and time by updating the status of subject just by clicking a link and then hiding by a simple click by administrator. Admin also has the right to add, update, delete the question from database, and also has the right to update his own profile. b) Teacher This is the second category of user, teacher can share rights with administrator only on one activity i.e. question management, teacher can also add, update and delete question from database but only from their relative subject, teacher of one subject can never add, delete and update question from other subject. Another activity that teacher can perform is profile updation of his own account according to the requirements. c) Student Student is the third category of user and has limited rights on the system. User of this category can register, update their profile and enter to exam. Students can attempt only those papers in the exam which is related to their semester and department. Students can also check their results, both current and previous.

CONTENT MANAGEMENT MODULE This module deals with the management of the contents of the system; the contents that this module deals with are subjects and questions. a) Subject Management There are many subjects in the database, for better management of these subjects; every subject has an association with a specific semester of a department which is done at the time of addition of subject. Different activities are performed on the subject for management purpose such as addition, updation and deletion. b) Question Management There are thousands of questions added by teachers to the question bank for better management each question is associated with a specific subject of a particular semester in a department which make it unique. Question management allows administrator and teacher to add, update and delete questions.