Fans will be able to take the 50-question preliminary general knowledge exam online from March 28 to 30. Each day is designated for a specific time zone and will get different questions from the other two.
"Jeopardy" executive producer Harry Friedman said the contestant coordinators evaluate more than 25,000 hopefuls every year. About 400 of those get to sign their name on the podium's screen as actual contestants.
This new secure online testing method will reach out far beyond the cities his team can visit in person. It also will be more convenient and less intimidating, Friedman said.
"Our online testing process allows our many viewers the opportunity to take the test from their very own computer, at home, at the office--virtually anywhere," he said.
Cheating is theoretically possible, but it won't do much good. Those who pass the online test and are selected for an interview will have to travel to one of the in-person auditions and pass another test with proctors watching over them.
Fans must preregister and supply basic information, after which they receive a specific time during which they must log in and answer the questions.