Exam FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions for Exam4
General Questions
Click here for an Exam4 tutorial
Click here for an Exam4 Takehome tutorial


Do I have to use Exam4 to write my exams?

Yes. All students must use the Exam4 software. 

What are the Exam Types?

In-Person or remote.

What are the Exam Modes and what does this mean for me?

Closed: Closed-computer exam. You do not have access to other data on your PC and are not able to get out of the exam window unless you submit or end the exam. 

Open Laptop: Open-computer exam with access to other data on your PC. You do not have access to the Internet. Please refer to exam instructions on what you are permitted to access during your exam. 

Open Laptop + Network: Open-computer exam with access to other data on your PC plus access to the Internet. Please refer to exam instructions on what you are permitted to access during your exam. 

Takehome: Open-computer exam intended for take home exams. You will be able to access data on your PC, access the Internet, and have access to copy and paste from outside sources into Exam4 software. You can suspend Takehome exams, reopen, and edit until you are ready to submit your exam. This format is typically used for exams where a final paper is uploaded, or where multiple documents are required. Please refer to exam instructions on what you are permitted to access during your exam as well as if external paste is allowed. 

What are the Question Types?

Essay, Multiple Choice, or Essay + Multiple Choice. 

Will I download Exam4 once and then I'm done?

No. You have to download a new version each semester as the software is built to our specifications each term. Once exams are complete, we recommend you uninstall older versions of the software before downloading the new version. 

What happens when I submit my exam?

Your exam is encrypted once submitted for Closed, Open Laptop, and Open Laptop + Network exams, so you cannot access and reedit. For takehome exams, once you submit your exam, any subsequent submittals will not replace the original exam submitted. 

How will I know I submitted an exam?

To confirm you submitted an exam, you will reopen the Exam4 software. From there, click 'Select an existing exam'. Next, highlight the exam you wish to confirm, then, select 'View Exam Submittal Receipt'. A new window will appear and you are looking for 'Exam Submittal Successful'. 

How and when can I review my submitted exam?

Exam answers are encrypted, so you will not be able to access the file after it is submitted. Students can review their exam answers during the Exam Review process via the Law Registrar that begins after grades are posted for a limited time. Please book an appointment with the Law Registrar office. 

I need help downloading and completing practice exams.

Beginning in April, contact the Law Registrar at lawreg@wm.edu to schedule an appointment and be prepared to bring your laptop. They will provide in-person coaching on how to download and walk you through the practice exams. All students are required to complete a practice exam before the exam period begins. 

You can also watch video tutorials provided by the Exam4 vendor here. 

I have a paper upload; do I email it directly to my professor or use Exam4? 

Review your professor's instructions on how to submit answers.  Some instructors prefer papers to be emailed or uploaded to a different portal. If you are unsure, ask your instructors in advance.

Are all exams to be uploaded to the Law School's exam platform?

Only those exams posted on the exam schedule will be administered using Exam4.

When is the first date I may take a remote or takehome exam?

Unless defined otherwise by the faculty member (see exam schedule), you may begin taking remote or takehome exams on the first day of the exam period. Confirm the deadline to submit your exam and afford yourself enough time to complete and submit prior to the published deadline.

What if I have questions during the exam?

Follow the instructions from the professor. To maintain anonymity do not contact your professor once the exam has started, nor after. If you are unable to resolve yourself visit the Registrar in suite 124 or email lawexam@wm.edu.

How can I best prepare myself for a smooth exam experience? 
  • Download the Exam4 platform well before the beginning of the exam period.
  • Take the practice exam in the Exam4 platform. We encourage you to take the practice exam in each Exam Mode so you are comfortable for every type of exam you have scheduled. 
  • Confirm your computer has the minimum operating standards and resolve any issues prior to the beginning of the exam period.
  • Review the exam policy of the professor, the school policies and the Honor Code.
  • For In-Person Exams appear in the scheduled classroom at least 10 minutes before the exam is to begin. Check the exam schedule and lobby monitors to confirm the exam room, date, time and duration. Note, that the exam may begin without you if you do not arrive to the classroom at least 10 minutes prior to the start of the exam.
    • The exam time starts when the exam proctor indicates the exam has started.
    • Read CAREFULLY any instructions given on the exam. 
    • Submit the completed exam in the exam platform by the appointed time.
    • Return the exam questions to the proctor or leave at the front of the classroom by the appointed time.
  • For Remote Exams log onto your laptop at least 10 minutes before the exam is scheduled to begin. Check the exam schedule and lobby monitors to confirm the exam date(s), time and duration.
    • The exam time starts when you begin the exam in the Exam4 software.
    • Read CAREFULLY any instructions given on the exam. 
    • Submit the completed exam in the exam platform by the appointed time.
Will I have access to normal editing functions?

The software allows access to cut, copy, paste, undo/redo, delete, and select all within your exam text. You can cut, copy, paste, undo, and redo within your exam document via the Menu or by using your shortcut keys.  Note that the 'delete' key on Windows computers only works when text is highlighted. 

Exam4 does not allow external paste (cutting and pasting to and from external files) in the Closed, Open Laptop, and Open Laptop + Network modes.

What other formatting will I have access to?

Bold, Italic, Underline, Left Justify, Center Justify, Right Justify, zoom, a dictionary, and some special characters will be available. 

My exam instructions include certain font type, font size, and spacing requirements. How do I include this in Exam4?

Exam4 is a basic word processing software, so you will not be able to make these adjustments within your exam. These adjustments will be made on the back-end when your submitted answers are being prepared and sent to faculty for grading. 

Will I be able to copy and paste information from Microsoft Word to Exam4?

It is not possible to copy and paste between external documents and Exam4 for exams in the Closed, Open Laptop, or Open Laptop + Network exam modes. 

For takehome exams, although external paste is allowed, we strongly recommend typing answers directly into Exam4. Exam4 automatically saves every ten seconds and creates separate back-ups to the hard drive every two minutes. 

Please note that some faculty do not allow cut, copy, and paste at all. Please follow individual exam instructions. 

Will I have access to spell check?

Yes, spell check is located in the Tools menu. It can be used at any time but it does not automatically check as you type. 

What is the Answer Separator?

This feature allows you to separate your questions thus allowing word counts by question. If you edit the Answer Separator, it will not count your words correctly. 

It looks similar to this:

Answer Separator Example: 




Answer to Question -______ 

What is the timer?

The timer and optional reminders within the Exam4 software are purely to aid in self-pacing during an exam. It is essentially a clock that counts down, with optional reminders, that you can watch within your exam software. Exam4 will not cut you off or automatically close if you select the timer option. 

For remote exams, the exam time starts when you begin the exam in the Exam4 software. For in-person exams, the exam time starts when the exam proctor indicates the exam has started. 

What if I'm late for the exam?

The exams begin at the stated time. If you are late for the exam you will have only what time remains. Your exam will be due with all exams distributed that day for that class. You do not have an extension of the exam period because you were late or if you encounter computer issues that were or could be identified by taking the practice exam but were not resolved prior to the exam period. 

Will Exam4 save my exam automatically?

Yes, Exam4 automatically saves the exam you are typing in every ten seconds with an additional back-up to your hard drive every two minutes. 

Will I be able to add endnotes or footnotes?

No, Exam4 does not allow endnotes or footnotes. 

Will I need to double-space type my answers?

No, your answers can be doubled-spaced when we print the exam answers for faculty for grading. 

How will I get my exam questions?

Exam questions and instructions will be printed for in-person exams. For remote exams, you will have access to the questions and instructions within the exam platform, found under Exam Info, then Exam Documents, then Exam Resources. 

What do I do with the exam questions for an in-person exam?

Return the exam questions to the proctor or return to the classroom at the time the exam is due. 

Is there a limit to how much I can write?

First, please refer to your exam instructions for possible word limitations. Exam4 will begin to hit its maximum file size near 20 single-spaced pages. Warnings will occur when you are near this maximum. 

How do I enter multiple choice answers?

To open the multiple choice questions, select 'Multiple Choice' from the Menu at the top. Do not enter anything in the 'Document ID' field at the top.

Use the up and down arrows to navigate questions, or, click on the question in the list.

Select your answer. To change your answer, select 'Clear'. To note a question to return to later, select 'Mark'. 

To close the Multiple Choice answer box, select 'Hide'. 

How do I submit my exam?

After you end your exam, it takes a short period of time (about 30 seconds) for your computer to reconnect to the network. This needs to happen before you can submit electronically. After that period of time has occurred, you can click to submit your exam electronically. If the exam will not submit electronically, seek assistance from your proctor if in-person, save to a USB flash drive, or reach out to the Law Registrar. 

On Macs, it may be necessary to click on the Airport icon, select 'Securewireless' and once the network connection has been established, you can go back to the exam software and submit your exam electronically. 

Can I exit and save an exam, then reopen and edit?

No, do not exit and submit the exam unless you are finished. Once the exam is submitted, it is encrypted and cannot be reopened. Takehome exams are the only exam mode where you can suspend the exam and exit Exam4 if you need to take a break. 

How do I take a break from my Takehome exam and reopen?

To take a break, click on the 'End Exam' menu at the top left and select 'End Exam Now'. A window will open and asks you to confirm this by checking the confirm box and clicking the OK button. You will need to select the 'Suspend Exam' button. Once you have done so, you can then exit Exam4 by clicking the 'Exit Exam4' menu at the top left. 

To resume your exam when you are ready, open the Exam4 software and choose 'Select Existing Exam'. Highlight the exam in your list you want to resume. Next, click the 'Begin' button to pick-up where you left-off. Please know that suspending the exam in Exam4 will not pause the duration of time allowed to complete the exam. 

My Takehome exam is 5 hours. Can I work on it 2 hours today, take a break, and use the remaining 3 hours at a later time?

Once you begin your Takehome exam, in this case, you have 5 hours to complete and submit the exam. The 5 hour limit begins as soon as you begin the exam and will continue running regardless of how many times or how long you choose to suspend the exam. i.e., if you open the exam and suspend it for 4.5 hours, then you will only have 30 minutes to work on the exam and submit it, or it will be counted late.


Is a laptop or desktop computer required? 

At William & Mary we require all incoming students to own a notebook computer. A laptop makes it easier for you to stay connected with classmates, professors and administrators no matter where you might be on campus. Laptops or desktops must be capable of running full MS Windows or full MAC operating systems.   

All computers should have the below specifications (at a minimum):  

  • Intel i5 processor or higher 
  • 256GB hard drive or higher 
  • 8GB of RAM or higher 
  • the latest Windows or Mac operating system 

Chromebooks, tablets, or mobile devices are not compatible with Exam4. They likely do not meet academic computing requirement needs, especially as it pertains to the installation of software. 

What are the supported operation systems and minimum specification requirements?

You can find the most up-to-date technology requirements on the Exam4 support page

Please note that as of February 2023, the following operating systems and hardware configurations are NOT supported:

  • Beta OS versions 
  • Apple macOS 10.14 and earlier 
  • Apple iDevices (iPad, iPhone, etc.) 
  • Windows 8.1 and earlier
  • Windows (RT, IoT, Mobile, Team & S versions) 
  • Windows 10 SL (non-English Editions) 
  • Surface devices that do not have Windows 10/11 Home, Pro, Education or Enterprise version
  • Windows computers with ARM processors (i.e., Snapdragon) 
  • Linux
  • Chromebooks
  • Virtual operating systems (VMs) 
How do I find out what operating system is on my computer?

On Windows, locate the 'This PC' icon on your desktop or folders. Right-click on This PC and click on properties. From there you will be able to see the device and Windows specifications. 

For Macs, click on the System Preferences, then Software Update link. A box will appear with your current operating system. 

What is the security check Exam4 runs on my computer?

This is a mandatory check of the hard drive of Windows users for files that may interfere with Exam4 software in Closed exam mode only. Once you start your exam, the Security Check will automatically begin, lasting typically 30-40 seconds, but can take upwards of two minutes. During this time, you may begin reading your exam questions. 

If the Security Check finds a file that is considered a risk, you will need to correct the problem before you can start your exam. If you have questions about the problem, please follow the links for Exam4 user support for help. 

All students should complete a practice exam in the Closed mode before their Closed exam. Keep in mind that anything you download between the time of your practice exam and your actual exam may affect the Security Check. 

Does the security check performed by Exam4 for closed book exams have access to or read files on the computer?

No, the security check run by the Exam4 platform does not read files or documents on the computer; its only function is to review for programs that are not allowed with Exam4 such as dual monitors in a CLOSED mode exam

Will I be monitored during my exam by Exam4? 

No, William & Mary Law School has opted out of the Exam4 feature that records or monitors exam takers. 

How do I download Exam4?

Before downloading the new software each semester, we recommend you uninstall the outdated software to ensure you are always using the latest version.

To download the latest version:

  • Go to the Exam4 website, and navigate to 'Law Schools' in the left menu.
  • Select 'V' for Virginia, or scroll down.
  • Select William & Mary
  • Fill out the required registration information and select your operation system. Select continue. 
  • Click the Download Exam4 button.
  • Install Exam4 as you would any other application on your computer. 

Please note there will be periods of time where the Exam4 software is not available to download. Announcements will be made to students when the latest version is available for download.  

How do I uninstall prior versions of Exam4?

Please visit the Exam4 support page for instructions. 

Common Exam4 problems:


Cursor Missing 

Press the Tab Key 

Screen Frozen, No Mouse, Cursor, Key Movement 

Press Alt+Tab 

I have a Mac and received this message: "Mac warning: You must Authenticate in order to disable the network to take this exam." What does this mean?

Please visit the Exam4 support page for instructions to resolve this issue. 

I received this message: "The computer's current language setting is not allowed." What does this mean?

Please visit the Exam4 support page for instructions to resolve this issue. 

How do I resolve the error, 'The request timed out' when attempting to start an exam?

This error occasionally happens in Exam4 for Mac users. To resolve, close and reopen the Exam4 software and then start a new exam. This may require you to do a forced quit by hitting the Option, Command, and Escape keys simultaneously and choosing to close Exam4 from there.  

What if Exam4 does not start?

Try exiting the software and restarting your computer. If your computer passed the Security Check but failed this time, be sure to start the exam software after your computer restarts and before you do anything else. 

What should I do if my completed exam will not submit electronically?

Make sure you are connected to wifi. Open Exam4, choose the 'Select an Existing Exam' option, select your Exam, and click the “Submit Electronically” button. If this still does not work, you can restart your computer and repeat the steps above. Contact lawexam@wm.edu if you are still having issues. 

Can I use extension cords if using a computer?

Yes, but only if you ensure the safety of others by not stretching the cords across walking paths.