Configuring devices

For each operating system, the device configuration process is completed in three steps:

  1. Proceeding to a device diagnostic check
  2. Verifying the supported platforms
  3. Installing lock-down browsers if school (school board) chooses this security feature for Primary and Junior Assessments. Otherwise, proceed to Direct Access.

Ensure the correct Safe Exam Browser (SEB) version has been installed on all computers. This version can be downloaded directly from the School Administrator or Board IT accounts.

Schools using devices that are not compatible with SEB or Kiosk or where students require assistive technology tools must e-mail 

Step 1 – Proceeding to a device diagnostic check

A pre-administration hardware check will be available from the student login page of the e-assessment system to help identify devices which may not run well with the SEB or Kiosk lockdown browsers, or the Alternative or Direct Access to the e-assessment.   

Step 2 – Verifying the supported platforms

Operating System Supported Browser List
Google Chromeupdated version

Mozilla Firefoxupdated version

Microsoft Edgeupdated version
Mac OSX 10.13.6
High Sierra or higher
(Apple, MacBook)
Safariupdated version

Google Chromeupdated version

Mozilla Firefoxupdated version
Mac iOS
(Apple, iPad)
Safariupdated version
Google Chromeupdated version
Google Chrome
Google Chromeupdated version

Each combination of an operating system and a device require:

  • a different browser locking software
  • a different installation process

The minimum recommended screen resolution is 768 x 1024. This allows any device the size of an iPad Mini or larger to be used.

Step 3 – Installing the lock-down browsers

Safe Exam Browser

The SEB is a specialized web browser that restricts students’ access to external tools and resources while they are taking the Assessment of Reading, Writing and Mathematics, Primary and Junior Divisions. The SEB-configuration file regulates access to system functions, other applications and other settings while also pointing the SEB to the assessments and performing a special “handshake” to validate security. For the Primary and Junior Assessments, the use of the Safe Exam Browser is optional at the discretion of your school board.

You can download the SEB-configuration file in the Technical Readiness tab of the e-assessment system. Use the password given in the same tab.

Option 1 – Installing and loading SEB on macOS

  1. Ensure that your operating system version is higher than 10.13.6 (see Find out which macOS your Mac is using).
  2. Download the macOS Safe Exam Browser.
  3. Open the SEB-configuration file.
  4. Enter the password in the login screen.

The software should not be opened directly. The SEB-configuration file in the Downloads folder must be double-clicked.

Option 2 – Installing and loading SEB on iOS

  1. Download the Safe Exam Browser App in the App Store.

You can also directly download the Safe Exam Browser App.

  1. Download the SEB-configuration file.
  2. In the Downloads folder of your iPad, open the SEB-configuration file
  3. Enter the SEB password.
  4. Log in with your email and password.

Opening the application brings you to a configuration page where you don’t need to fill in anything.

Option 3 – Installing and loading SEB on Windows

1. Download the Safe Exam Browser Installer.

2. Run the SafeExamBrowserInstaller.exe file.

3. Follow the instructions of the InstallShield Wizard.

4. Open the Safe Exam Browser.

The assessments are compatible with version 3.4.0 of the SEB.

In the Do you want to allow this app to make changes to your device? dialog box, click Yes.

You may encounter the following message: You have installed Safe Exam Browser (SEB), but it isn’t configured yet.

5. Follow the instructions of the InstallShield Wizard.

6. Open the Safe Exam Browser.

7. Open the SEB-configuration file.

8. Enter the password in the login screen.

The software should not be opened directly. The SEB-configuration file in the Downloads folder must be double-clicked.


The Kiosk application can be used on Chromebook devices to restrict a student’s ability to access external resources or tools outside the assessment. Within the Kiosk application, students cannot access the Internet or take pictures or screenshots. Kiosk mode does not affect the student’s ability to interact with the questions or use the assessment tools. The use of Kiosk is an optional security feature for the Primary and Junior Assessments at the discretion of your school board.

The Kiosk application requires version 87 or higher of Chrome.

The username and password for Kiosk can be found in the Technical Readiness tab.

Step 1 – Installing the Kiosk app on a Chromebook

1. Open the Chrome browser.

2. Search for the Kiosk app in the Chrome Web Store

You can also directly access the download page of Kiosk.

3. On the application page, click Add to Chrome.

4. Click Add extension in the confirmation dialog box.

Step 2 – Setting up the Kiosk app

Before you can set up Kiosk, you will need the Kiosk Policy Document. You can download it in the Technical Readiness tab of the e-assessment system.

  1. Click Kiosk on the home screen.
  2. Navigate to the bottom of the screen and click Import Policy.
  3. Upload the Kiosk Policy Document.
  4. Check the Clear Cache on Save box.
  5. Click Save & Restart.

Step 3 – Exiting the Kiosk app

  1. Press Ctrl + A to select all.
  2. Enter the username and password found in the Kiosk Policy Document.
  3. Click Go.
  4. Press Esc.
  5. In the Chromebook shelf, right-click the Kiosk icon and click Close.

Alternative access

The alternative access is for specific students with assistive-technology accommodations.

School administrators will indicate which student(s) require a specific software that is not compatible with either the SEB or the Kiosk application.

Only these students will be permitted to access the assessment through the EQAO login page.

Students not permitted to use this alternative access method will receive an error message if they try to access the assessment in this way.

Direct Access

Through the Direct Access option, students will be able to access the assessments directly by logging in through the EQAO login page. This option does not need to be installed and allows for the use of third-party software. The Direct Access option is available for all Primary and Junior Assessments in publicly funded schools.

Students can access the assessment in this way if they are using the following:

  • Windows devices, Macs, Chromebooks, Android tablets and iPads (Note: For iPads, the assessment will not be in full screen mode)
  • Chrome, Firefox, Edge or Safari
  • the Read&Write for Google Chrome extension
  • the Read&Write downloadable application

The assessments accessed in this way maintain a level of security comparable to that for the assessments run in the Kiosk application.

Teachers will receive a notification in the e-assessment system if students, who access the assessments through the EQAO login page, perform an action that is not permitted (e.g., navigating away from or minimizing the page they are completing on the assessment). Teachers can investigate and allow the student to continue if there is a legitimate reason for the student’s action.

The Google Chrome extension bar is fully available when the assessments are accessed through the EQAO login page. This allows the student to use the Read&Write for Google Chrome or Google Translate extensions if the student requires these as part of an accommodation. Google Chrome extensions and the Google Chrome extension bar are not available through the SEB or Kiosk application.

Instructions for Students using Direct Access:

  1. Launch the browser and open the EQAO website:
  2. Select Login in the upper-right corner of the web page.
  3. On the login page, click Login under the Students section.
  4. Enter the access code and the OEN that your teacher provides, and then click Sign In.

Students will be able to initiate the required browser extension or application following this process, prior to starting the assessments.

System Validations (by schools)

School administrators will validate that the lockdown software has been properly installed on the devices.

Updated on April 24, 2024