CCE Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Information Systems (DISS)


College of Computing and Engineering


Ling Wang

Committee Member

Mary Harward

Committee Member

Junping Sun


Acceptance and Use of Technology, Authentication Technologies, Continous Authentication, E-Assessment Security, Impersonation Attacks, Privacy Concerns


No solution can ultimately eliminate cheating in online courses. However, universities reserve funding for authentication systems to minimize the threat of cheating in online courses. Most higher education institutions use a combination of authentication methods to secure systems against impersonation attacks during online examinations. Authentication technologies ensure that an online course is protected from impersonation attacks. However, it is important that authentication methods secure systems against impersonation attacks with minimal disruption during an examination. Authentication methods applied to secure e-assessments against impersonation attacks may impact a student’s attitude and intentions to use the e-examination system.

In this regard, the research study investigated student attitudes and intentions to use examination software that requires continuous authentication to protect the system against impersonation attacks. This research examined how student attitudes and intentions to use continuous authentication methods applied to e-assessment security are related to students’ performance expectancy, effort expectancy and privacy concerns. In addition, the investigation explored how these constructs are also related to trust and perceived risks associated with using the system.

Utilizing the Unified Theory of Acceptance and Use of Technology Model (UTAUT) conceptual framework, this quantitative study extracted associated constructs from the literature to employ an instrument that measures students’ perceptions on continuous authentication methods which are designed to mitigate impersonation attacks during e-exams including proctoring, webcam monitoring and lock-down browsers. Findings suggest that factors such as performance expectancy, effort expectancy and privacy concerns may significantly influence a student’s behavioral intentions and attitudes during e-exams. Furthermore, these perceptions also extend to impact students’ perceived risks when interacting with the authentication system and may be contingent on levels of trust depending on the technology. The findings underscore the importance of understanding student perspectives in shaping their experiences with authentication technologies.