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Testing Accommodation

Descriptions and Process

Additional Time: We recommend giving some students additional time for in-class tests. The appropriate amount of time is determined by the Student Disability Services staff, and based primarily on the student's documented needs. Students do have the option to take their tests at the Office of Student Disability Services. However, in the event that the student may have questions, which are best answered by someone with knowledge of the subject matter, it is more beneficial for the student if the instructor, a teaching assistant or grader from the class or department proctors the tests.

Alternate exam dates during periods of heavy scheduling: Students with a variety of disabilities may need to space their exams out in order to allow for them to have an equitable opportunity to perform on exams. Each case is different. SDS recommends talking about the issues with the student to determine the best way to address this. SDS is also happy to be a part of the discussion.

Alternate testing environment: SDS encourages all students who require testing accommodations to try as best they can to make arrangements with their instructors directly. If this is not possible, students may elect to take their tests in one of the testing rooms in the Office of Student Disability Services suite.

Assistive Technology: Some students will require assistive technology to be able to complete their test. They may be able to use a laptop of their own or one from SDS, depending on the needs of the individual. If using a personal laptop is not an option, SDS has laptops equipped with a variety of assistive software and are used specifically for testing purposes.

Calculator: The use of a calculator helps some students avoid mistakes such as reversing or skipping numbers. The use of a calculator could be considered an unreasonable accommodation at times, especially if the calculator would perform the specified operations which the exam is intended to measure.

No Scantron: Due to visual processing issues or vision-related disabilities, some students may find it difficult to transfer their answers to a scantron. In this case, we ask that students be allowed to answer directly on the test. If this is not possible, please contact SDS to determine what other options might be available.

Scribe: Students, who are unable to write their exam responses independently due to either a physical or visual disability, may require assistance with this process. SDS encourages students to use assistive technology for this purpose, whenever possible, as a preferred method to ensure that their work is completed independently. If assistive technology is not an available or appropriate option given the circumstances, SDS can assist with locating a scribe.

Spell-check or points not taken off for spelling: The use of a spellchecker will help students and may help the grader by making tests easier to read. If the function of the test or assignment includes measuring spelling ability, this accommodation may not be appropriate.

NOTE: This does NOT apply for take-home exams. Typically, students have ample time to complete the exam and can use a spell check in the process. Students should be held to the same standard as other students for their work on take-home exams.

Process: In order to utilize one’s testing accommodations:

  • Student must ask the instructor if he/she is able to provide the necessary accommodations for taking an exam.
  • If the instructor is unable to provide testing accommodations, discuss with the instructor specifics of taking the exam at the Office of Student Disability Services. This includes acceptable dates and time to take the exam at SDS.
  • After talking with the instructor, the student MUST contact SDS 3-5 days PRIOR to the exam date to schedule his/her exam.
  • Once the exam has been scheduled at SDS, the student must notify his/her instructor of the date and time of the exam at SDS.
  • At least 24 hours prior to the student’s scheduled exam appointment, the instructor must deliver the exam to SDS.