Web-based college programs won't have to buy pricey monitoring gadgets like cameras and fingerprint or eye scanners to satisfy the requirements of a section in the recently reauthorized Higher Education Act, federal officials say. Instead, they say, exam proctors and secure logins will suffice to ensure honest test taking.

Higher-education policy makers and IT directors had worried that the latest version of the Higher Education Act, which Congress enacted last fall, might require web-based programs to spend millions annually for advanced 360-degree cameras and other surveillance technology that would watch students take tests on their computers. Their concerns stemmed from a...

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