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Laptop Exams

General Information
The University of Michigan Law School uses Electronic Bluebook (EBB) for taking laptop exams. The approved versions of EBB work on laptops running Windows and Mac operating systems configured to use English-United States language and regional settings. If you have a foreign version of Windows installed on your laptop, contact LawIT to make sure that your laptop is set up properly.

Technical and Minimum System Requirements
To run EBB effectively, your laptop must meet or exceed the following minimum  specifications:
  • 1GB RAM (memory)
  • Wireless network card (to save your exams to the network)
  • A screen resolution of at least 1024 x 768.
Features of EBB

Automatic Backups
EBB automatically saves backup copies of your exam answer(s) to a file on your laptop's hard drive every 30 seconds and also saved on the network approximately every three (3) minutes if you use the network option. These backup files can be recovered from your computer later if necessary.

Exam Identifier
EBB automatically inserts your exam identifier and course information on each page of your exam, so you do not need to type this information on each page.

Automatic Timer
EBB provides a timer, page counter, line counter, character counter, and word counter so that you can keep track of your time and place in the exam.

Cut and Paste (NOT Copy)
EBB allows you to cut and paste (NOT copy) portions of your answer within EBB (not into or out of EBB) using shortcut keys or the cut and paste formatting buttons located at the top of the typing screen. EBB does not allow you to drag and drop blocks of text using your mouse.  Important: there is no copy functionality in EBB.

Function Buttons
EBB allows you to underline, bold, and italicize text using the buttons at the top of the typing screen or listed shortcut keys. In addition, the standard keys on your keyboard for punctuation will work as normal. EBB will not, however, allow you to use any function keys, macros, templates, or keyboard shortcuts available in Word or other word-processing programs (other than the ones specifically designated as included in EBB).

Blocked and Unblocked Modes
EBB does not allow you to switch to other programs or review any files or folders on your computer while you are typing in EBB. If you exit the program to review other files, you will not be allowed to return to the previously typed exam answer. UNBLOCKED EBB, however, does allow you to view other files on your computer while you are in EBB.

No Spell Check Function
EBB does not provide a spell check function (this feature is not available to non-typists).

Undo and Redo Buttons
EBB provides Undo and Redo functions, using buttons located at the top of the typing screen or listed shortcut keys, to restore accidental deletions. The Undo and Redo functions will restore up to 20 prior actions or keystrokes.

New Page Function
Each page allows 24 lines of text. You can start a new answer on a new page (in the same section) by clicking on the New Page button located at the top of the typing screen, or pressing Ctrl-N.

Automatic Formatting
Your typed answer will print out in a double-spaced Courier format even though it appears in a single-spaced format on your screen as you type. You do not need to manually double-space your exam answer(s). Additionally, you should not hit a hard return at the end of each line. Instead, let EBB wrap on the screen for you, because when EBB prints it will interpret a hard return as a new paragraph.  Zoom settings also have no effect on the printed version of your exam.

Exam Questions Not Contained in EBB
The exam questions are not contained in EBB. You will be given a paper copy of the exam to work from just like the non-typing students. Unless instructed otherwise, you must return the exam questions to the proctor when you finish your exam. You need not retype the exam questions into your exam unless your professor has specifically requested that you do so.


Finishing and Saving Your Exam
During the exam, you will follow the step-by-step instructions given by the proctor.

When you are done with your exam, click the Finish Exam button, or press Ctrl-Q (Windows) or CMD-Q (Mac). These are the only ways to exit the program (don't worry if you accidentally click the Finish button during your exam because you will be given a chance to return to your exam on the next screen.) Once you have exited the program, you will not be allowed to return to your answer to modify it because the files are encrypted for security purposes.

When you exit the program, EBB automatically saves your final exam in an encrypted format on your hard disk. EBB will upload the final version of your exam to the network (if your wireless connection is working properly) and then will redirect you to the Submit Exams website so that you can manually upload your exam file to the network (as an extra backup precaution).

You will get either a green or yellow screen after you exit EBB. The green screen indicates that your exam was saved to the network and disk successfully.  A yellow screen will appear if there has been any problem saving to the network or to your hard drive.  If your final screen color is yellow, read the message on the screen. If the message states there was a problem saving to the network, ignore it and continue to the Submit Exams website. If the message says there was a problem saving to the disk, ask a LawIT staff member in your classroom for assistance.

Important Notes
Rented or Borrowed Laptops:
If you are renting or borrowing a laptop to take EBB exams, please see an IT staff member to move all exams taken on that laptop to the network before returning the laptop to its owner or vendor.

Pay attention to e-mail sent from the Records Office:
If there is a problem printing your exam, the Records Office will notify you via e-mail and/or phone the same day to bring your laptop in for exam recovery.

Testing EBB:

While we strongly encourage you to test EBB before you take an actual exam, do not type anything you want to read after you finish your test exam. EBB exam files are encrypted and you will not be able to decrypt them.