IMPORTANT NOTES: 

Windows 11 is not yet compatible with Electronic Bluebook.  Do not upgrade your computer to Windows 11 if you plan on taking laptop exams this semester.

There are features in EBB that are not working in MacOS 12 Monterey.   We advise not upgrading to macOS 12 yet if you plan on taking laptop exams this semester.

 

Download EBB

The University of Michigan Law School uses Electronic Bluebook 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.

Windows

 Download Windows EBB
(latest version: 4.01.0001)
Compatible with Windows 8.1 and 10 - Released Aug 2018 

Mac

Download Mac EBB
(latest version: 3.30)
Compatible with macOS 10.14 - 11 - Released Aug 2021

EBB Requirements

  • Minimum System Requirements

    To run EBB effectively, your laptop must meet or exceed the following minimum  specifications:

    • Microsoft Windows 8.1, 10 or macOS 10.14.x - 11.x configured for English-United States language and region
    • At least 2 GB of RAM (memory)
    • Wireless network card recommended (to save your exam(s) to the network)
    • A minimum 1024 x 768 screen resolution

EBB Features

  • Spellcheck

    In the Windows version, your spelling is not being checked as you type, but you are able to use this function to check the spelling of words you have already typed at any time during your exam. In the Mac version, you must click on the spell check button in each section you wish to be checked. When you do, spelling is checked as you type.

  • 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 saves on the network approximately every three (3) minutes (if you are connected to a network). 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

    BLOCKED 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.

  • 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.

  • Hide Exam

    This is useful if you need to leave the room during a blocked exam and want to obscure your answers.

  • Exam Questions Not Contained in EBB

    The exam questions are not contained in EBB. You will be given a paper copy of the exam. 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

    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 in your Documents folder. 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 Law School Information Technology 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 a Law School Information Technology 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 Email Sent from the Office of Student Records

    If there is a problem printing your exam, the Office of Student Records will notify you via email 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 (see instructions above), 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. 

Recommendations for Using EBB

  • Be Sure Your Laptop is Working

    To safely participate in laptop exams, it is critical that your computer be functioning well and virus free.

    • If you are aware of any problems (hardware- and/or software-related), have them fixed before the start of exams.
    • Make sure that your Windows or macOS updates are all current, and that your virus protection software is up to date. Do not wait until exam day to update your computer or antivirus software, as your computer may not be finished updating when the exam starts.
    • We recommend that no active tasks be performed (like running a full disk check for viruses) while taking the exam. If you have any virus protection software that uses a lot of memory, or which caused problems in the past, you should also do a test run with EBB, leaving the program running in the background to see if it causes any problems.
    • Follow the EBB installation instructions [[*IF POSSIBLE - jump to testing instructions]] and test EBB to ensure it works on your computer.
  • Restart Your Laptop

    You should restart your laptop on exam day, particularly if you have not restarted or powered it off in several days. Like most programs, EBB can run sluggishly if your computer has been on for a long period of time without a restart.

  • Power Settings

    It is recommended that you avoid allowing your laptop to enter "suspend" or "hibernation" mode during any period of inactivity while you are using EBB.

  • Close Other Applications

    Although it is not likely that leaving other applications open while working in BLOCKED EBB will cause problems, we recommend that students close other applications before working in BLOCKED EBB, just to be safe.

  • Memory Overload Performance Issues

    Have your notes and outlines available in printed format and/or on a flash drive in case of memory overload or other computer problems during the exam.

  • File-sharing Programs

    If you use file sharing programs turn them off for the duration of the exam. File sharing programs such as BitTorrent may conflict with EBB during an exam, causing your computer to freeze or crash.

  • Undo and Redo Functions

    Use these functions to restore any part of your work that you accidentally delete. The Undo and Redo functions will restore up to 20 prior actions or keystrokes.

  • Copy and Paste Into and From EBB is Prohibited

    There is no copy feature in EBB, and you cannot copy text into or from EBB. If you type your exam in MS Word and try to copy the text into EBB, you will be prevented from doing so. You must type your entire exam directly in EBB and use the formatting features provided in that software program.

Macs

  • Notifications

    If you use the macOS Notifications feature, you may want to either turn it off or schedule a "Do Not Disturb" time frame so that you will not receive any notifications during your exam. You can do this by going to System Preferences | Notifications.

  • Additional Input Languages and Sources

    If you have more than one keyboard input source on your computer, you may have a shortcut to change between them enabled by default. This shortcut when activated in a BLOCKED exam can cause problems with EBB, and prevent you from typing. We recommend you either remove any additional input sources other than U.S. or disable the shortcut (Space + Control). You can do this by going to System Preferences > Keyboard > Input Sources

FAQs

  • What is Electronic Bluebook?

    Electronic Bluebook (EBB) is a secure test-taking program created by CompuTest that is downloaded onto a laptop computer configured for English language and regional settings and then used for typing in-class exams. Running EBB in BLOCKED mode essentially turns students’ laptops into simple word processors while the program is running.

  • What operating systems will work with EBB?
    • English-language Windows 8.1, 10 
    • macOS 10.14.x - 11.x (Mojave - Big Sur)
  • Does EBB work with MacOS Big Sur?

    Yes, EBB for macOS is compatible with macOS 11 Big Sur.

  • Does EBB work with Apple M1 Chips?

    Yes, EBB for macOS is compatible with Apple Silicon (M1) chips.

  • Will EBB work with non-English operating systems?

    As long as a non-English language operating system (OS) can run using the English language.

    Students with non-English language operating systems MUST take a test exam using EBB and prove to us that they have successfully passed the EBB test. We MUST see the printed test file.

  • What are the known EBB incompatibilities and conflicts?
    • Suspend/hibernation  
    • File Sharing Programs (e.g. Morpheus, uTorrent)  
    • Instant Messaging Programs (e.g. AIM (AOL), ICQ) 
    • Avira, Avast!, and Trend Antivirus suites (Windows only. You must add an exception to the Electronic Bluebook Program Files directory. Please see a Law School Information Technology staff member for assistance. Note, there may be other third-party security suites that could interfere with EBB).
  • Must I be connected to wireless to take laptop exams?

    No. You are not required to be connected to the wireless network, but it is necessary if you want to save your exam to the Law School network. If you do not have wireless turned on, the exam will be saved to your hard drive but not to the network. If you cannot upload your exam to the network, a Law School Information Technology staff member can upload it for you at the end of the exam.

  • Does the Law School loan out laptops for exams?

    The Law School ordinarily does not provide laptop computers. Students are responsible for providing their own equipment. If necessary, you can either borrow a laptop from a friend or hand write your exam in a bluebook.

    Warning: If you borrow a laptop to take EBB exams, please see a Law School Information Technology staff member to move all exams taken on that laptop to the network before returning the laptop to its owner.

  • Is there a fee to use EBB?

    No. Currently the EBB software is provided free of charge to Michigan Law students.

  • Will EBB work if my firewall is on?

    Yes.

  • Can I type my exam in Word and copy it into EBB?

    No. There is no "copy and paste" feature in EBB. You must type your entire exam directly into EBB and use the formatting features provided in that software program.

  • EBB does not open the Submit Exams page in Windows 10

    When you click the 'OK' button on the green screen after finishing your exam, a browser is supposed to open and direct you to the submitexams page. If this does not happen, your default browser may be set to Microsoft Edge. The fix is to change your default browser to anything else (Chrome, Firefox, etc.).

    Read the instructions

What to do if...

  • You have computer problems PRIOR to the start of an exam

    If EBB won't open, or if the laptop crashes prior to the start of the exam, you may elect to obtain a Computer-Problem Form from the proctor that you will take to the Office of Student Records for assistance. You should not leave the exam room with any paper exam materials. You should:

    • obtain a completed Computer-Problem Form from the proctor
    • return to the proctor all paper exam materials that you received
    • gather all belongings (e.g., backpack, books, notes, etc.) in one spot and leave them at your seat in the exam room
    • go directly to the Law School's Office of Student Records (416HH) with completed Computer-Problem Form and laptop for Law School Information Technology assistance.

    You may choose to hand write your exam in bluebooks instead of taking advantage of the opportunity to type your exam in EBB. Bluebooks are available from the proctor for this purpose.

  • You have computer problems DURING an exam

    You only have the option to type the remainder of your exam in EBB until 30 minutes prior to the end of the exam. If computer problems occur when there is LESS THAN 30 minutes left in the exam, you must obtain bluebooks from the proctor and continue hand writing your exam (Law School Information Technology assistance will be provided after the exam has ended).

    In order to be eligible for the opportunity to type the remainder of your exam in EBB, you MUST try the EBB Recovery feature at least once. The EBB Recovery feature allows students to restart their laptop, re-open EBB, and continue typing from where they left off. If the EBB Recovery feature does not work (i.e. laptop will not restart, EBB will not re-open, OR the previously typed text does not reappear [YOUR WORK IS PROBABLY NOT LOST]), then you may elect to obtain a Computer-Problem Form from the proctor that you will take to the Office of Student Records for assistance. Law School Information Technology staff will recover and print the previously typed portion of the exam and best efforts will be made to provide you with the opportunity to type the remainder of your exam in EBB. You should not leave the exam room with any paper exam materials (a staff member from the Office of Student Records will retrieve them from the proctor). You should:

    • obtain a completed Computer-Problem Form from the proctor
    • return to the proctor all paper exam materials that you received
    • gather all belongings (e.g., backpack, books, notes, etc.) in one spot and leave them at your seat in the exam room
    • go directly to the Law School's Office of Student Records (416HH) with completed Computer-Problem Form and laptop for Law School Information Technology  assistance.

    In the event of laptop failure, you may choose to continue hand writing in bluebooks instead of taking advantage of the opportunity to type the remainder of your exam in EBB. Bluebooks will be available from the proctor for this purpose. You may obtain bluebooks from the proctor, return to your seat, and continue hand writing your exam.

  • You have computer problems at the END of an exam

    Law School Information Technology staff will be available to assist you in the exam room after the exam has ended.

    Caution

    There is no guarantee that your exam answers will always be recoverable in every situation—this is true no matter what computer testing program you use. Any time you use a computer you take some risk of an error occurring that cannot be corrected regardless of the best efforts made.

  • You accidentally hit the finish button

    Don't worry. If you accidentally click the Finish button during your exam you will be given a chance to return to your exam on the next screen.

  • You get a yellow screen at the end of an exam

    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 Law School Information Technology staff member in your classroom for assistance.

  • You need help

    If you have any questions, we encourage you to contact LawITStudentSupport@umich.edu.