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What to look for when choosing your testing centre?

July 6, 2020

What to look for when choosing your testing centre?

Taking a certification or licencing exam can be quite stressful. Whether you’re a professional seeking accreditation or a distance education student looking for the best place to take a proctored exam, there’s a lot of planning and effort involved. Studying hard and building the right skills are par for the course for any exam. However, choosing the right testing centre can make a big difference during that important day as well.

The exam testing centre you choose should make the experience as painless as possible - not add even more uncertainty and anxiety to it. Choosing a centre where you’re comfortable will help you feel more relaxed on the day, which is why it’s good to do some research ahead of time to find the one that’s right for you.

Here are some things to consider when you’re looking at testing centres in Vancouver.


1. Location, Location, Location.

Naturally, the first thing to consider when choosing a testing centre is its location. You don’t want to have to get up too early to take a long, possibly stressful commute on the day. Nor do you want to have to rush through check-in before rushing to be on time for your test.

Choosing a centre located near you can help to get there early, with enough time to get settled before the exam starts. Ashton Testing Services has an exam testing centre located in Vancouver, making it convenient if you live in the area.

2. What do they provide?

A testing centre is more than just a building where you go take an exam. It’s also about the people who work there and their level of professionalism, as well as the amenities it provides. This may not come as big news to most people, but your level of comfort can have a remarkably big impact on your frame of mind when taking a test.

Comfort means different things to everyone, but there are a few criteria that you’ll likely want your testing centre to meet. The employees’ behaviour can help you feel more at ease and thus more relaxed when taking your test. Having a proctor or invigilator with the right attitude and proper knowledge of procedures will help the process go smoothly, and assure you of what’s going on and where you should be at all times. This includes important information such as what you’re allowed to take with you, how long the exam will be and the proper protocol for the exam.

Besides its people, a testing centre should have decent facilities. At Ashton Testing Services, we provide candidates with well-trained proctors in a state-of-the-art test centre. Our centre comes equipped with large partitioned desks and comfortable chairs. We also provide each candidate with noise-cancelling headphones in case they need them.

3. Parking and Transit

Not having to worry about parking or transport arrangements is always a big bonus. A convenient transit can not only get you to the centre early enough to get settled in, but will also mean a stress-free start without undue distractions from the exam you’re about to take.

Ashton Testing Services is conveniently located and easily accessible via public transit. Our test centre is a five-minute walk from the Burrard Skytrain Station. The centre has plenty of street parking available (2 hours max) too and is also situated close to two public parking facilities.

4. Do They Have a Good Reputation?

You can learn a lot about an exam testing centre before even going there. People talk and it’s easy to find out what others’ experiences have been like when they took their exams at a centre. Did they have adequate facilities? Were the staff professional and helpful? How clear were their rules and did they make it easy for candidates to find out what they needed to know?

Ashton Testing Services has received national recognition as a certified NCTA member through The National College Testing Association. This non-profit organization has rigorous standards and guidelines that have to be met in order to become certified. Ashton Testing Services received this certification for providing excellent service and maintaining high test administration standards.

5. Operating Hours

Not every exam testing centre in Vancouver or beyond operates at the exact same time. The reason this is important to take into consideration, is that the centres hours may not align with your schedule. Whether you’re a full-time or part-time student or a working professional, you should be able to book your exam during a time that suits you.

The hours of operation at Ashton Testing Services are Monday to Saturday - 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Special arrangements can be made for taking an exam on a Sunday if you contact the centre.

6. Supported Exams

The final, but not least important thing to consider when choosing a testing centre, is the types of exams you can take there. You may need to take more than one exam depending on your occupation or personal goals and it’s better to be able to take them all at the same place. That way your subsequent exams will be much more relaxed. 

We offer over 200 types of exams at Ashton Testing Services that span a number of different industries for all your testing needs. We diligently follow the regulations and protocols of the examining bodies for every exam and make sure to implement the necessary security processes to ensure that the results are legitimate.

7. Safety Measures

In light of recent events, Covid-19 safety measures are just as important a consideration as any of those listed above. 

To ensure your safety at Ashton Testing Services, we have implemented stringent rules regarding hand washing, masks, and social distancing for both staff and candidates. Our centre is also thoroughly cleaned several times a day, including in-between each test taker - and this includes common areas, test stations, writing surfaces, pens and locker keys, and the lockers themselves.

Ashton Testing Services has been assisting both academic and professional exam takers in the Vancouver area for over six years. We have gained national status as a leader in excellent testing practices, and are here to help you ace that next exam.

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