Grade 12 students in Alberta will soon be able to write their diploma exams on a computer.

The province announced on Tuesday that an electronic exam pilot project, with digital marking, will launch in the fall of 2014, with a full roll-out scheduled for 2017.  

Education Minister Jeff Johnson said that the initiative is intended to make exams more accessible for students who are enrolled in dual-credit courses, distance learning or flexible programs.

"When they're ready to write their diplomas, they can write their diplomas," he said.

David Jones, principal at Harry Ainlay High School, believes that students will get their results faster with digital exams.

"To apply for scholarships a little sooner so that they can make choices furthering their education," he said.

"I also believe that it'll maybe help them to decide if they want to go to another country that might start their post-secondary at different times throughout the year."

Jones believes that his concerns about the security of the system should be worked out during the pilot project.

Diploma exams are currently written twice a year. That will change to five times a year under the digital format.

Students who wish to write their exams using a pencil and paper can still do so.