Accommodations for High Stakes Tests     

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Accommodations for High Stakes Testing

The Americans with Disabilities Act, A.D.A. allows students with a qualifying learning disability diagnosis to receive Accommodations when taking the standardized exams. The documentation necessary to receive such accommodations is extensive and must show that the learning disorder significantly interferes with the ability to take the test under regular conditions.

What are accommodations?
Accommodations are alterations in the way tasks are presented that allow children with learning disabilities to complete the same assignments as other students. Accommodations do not alter the content of assignments, give students an unfair advantage or in the case of assessments, or change what a test measures. They do make it possible for students with Disabilities to show what they know without being impeded by their disability.

Here are some examples of possible accommodations:


  • Extend allotted time for a test  (Increased time by a certain percentage)
  • Allow frequent breaks


  • Administer a test in private room or alternative test site
  • Provide preferential seating
  • Provide special lighting or acoustics
  • Provide a space with minimal distractions
  • Administer a test in small group setting


  • Provide on audio tape
  • Provide in large print
  • Reduce number of items per page or line
  • Provide a designated reader
  • Present instructions orally


  • Allow for verbal responses
  • Allow for answers to be dictated to a scribe
  • Allow the use of a tape recorder to capture responses
  • Permit responses to be given via computer
  • Permit answers to be recorded directly into test booklet


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