What is the purpose of testing accommodations?
Testing accommodations are adjustments to the standard testing process that permit students with disabilities to take exams in such a way that minimizes, to the greatest extent possible, barriers caused by disability without fundamentally altering the intent of the exam or lowering the program standards.
What types of testing accommodations might students use?
Testing accommodations may include additional test time, testing in a quiet or low distraction rooms, alternate test formats (e.g., large print, audio, Braille), or the use of adaptive equipment (word processors, text enlargers).
When and how will I know if my student is eligible for a testing accommodation?
Students who have been determined eligible for a testing accommodation through AES should notify their professors and arrange testing accommodations within the first three weeks of a semester. In addition, professors will be notified of their student’s testing accommodation via a Faculty Notification Letter sent to their Willamette email from AES. As soon as they receive the Faculty Notification Letter, faculty should reach out to students with testing accommodations and invite them to meet to discuss their accommodations. Students who incur or recognize a disability and the need for an accommodation during the semester should be directed to immediately contact AES to request an accommodation.
Where is the testing center and who can use it?
The testing center is located in Smullin 155 and is managed by Marsa Terrell. Any student with a testing accommodation is eligible to use the testing center for their exams.
How can we use the Testing Center?
The student will contact both the AES office and the professor with the request to take their exam/test/quiz in the Testing Center. In order to adequately plan for staffing, seating, and timely preparation of materials, students must schedule any exams/tests/quizzes in the Testing Center at least three business days prior to the test date, or as soon as possible. To schedule an exam, you can email Marsa, call her at 503-370-6737, or stop by Smullin 155 during regular business hours.
Professors are responsible for providing a copy of exams/tests/quizzes to the AES office, as well as providing any instructions to accompany the exam/test/quiz (e.g., use of scratch paper, calculator, whether you are providing extra time to students in class, etc.). Exams/tests/quizzes are to be either emailed to Marsa or dropped off in person by the professor or their departmental administrative assistant.
Completed exams/tests/quizzes can be picked up by the professor or departmental administrative assistant following the scheduled testing center appointment. Requests to scan and email completed exams to the professor are also permissible provided instructions are given for what to do with the completed hard copy. Exams/tests/quizzes are not to be dropped off or picked up by a student nor are they to be sent via campus mail.
Can my student use their testing accommodations in a place outside the testing center?
Yes. When identifying space for an accommodated exam, whether the exam takes place in the testing center or in another location, all efforts must be made to ensure that the environment reflects that of the classroom:
- Maintain a distraction-reduced testing environment
- Anticipate outside factors that may divert the attention of examinees
- Take action to avoid potential problems (e.g., if a test is being given in a multi-use room, post signs to alert others to not enter the room)
- If students have access to the professor and are able to ask questions during the exam, make sure this is also true during the accommodated exam. The professor should provide a phone number or email address where they can be contacted during the exam, and the professor should be available to respond to the student during the scheduled exam time.
- Accommodated exams cannot be scheduled during the student’s other classes
Is there ever a time when a student’s request to use a testing accommodation can be denied?
Students are encouraged to arrange for testing accommodations for each of their tests/exams/quizzes as early in the semester as possible; however, the student can make a request to use their testing accommodation at any time. If a student gives their professor less than one business day’s notice of the need to arrange a testing accommodation, the professor should first consider whether the accommodation can be arranged or worked into existing arrangements in place for other accommodated exams. Faculty may consider and then deny a late accommodation request if reasonable justification can be made for the denial. Insufficient time to do the following may justify denial of a late accommodation request: a) identify space for the test to take place, b) identify test proctors, c) adapt the exam (e.g., provide a Braille or audio exam). Professors should then work with the student to identify arrangements for the remaining exams in the semester. Contact Accessible Education Services if you need assistance with late testing accommodation requests.
For more information, contact Accessible Education Services.