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Apply for SAT & ACT accommodations

24

Replies to: Apply for SAT & ACT accommodations

  • jym626jym626 Registered User Posts: 55,362 Senior Member
    Many people believe that it is extremely difficult to get accommodations for a diagnosed disability on standardized testing. In actuality, it is easier now than in years past. Congress passed the updated American with Disabilities Amendments Act (ADAAA) in 2008, with a broadened definition of “disability” and a less stringent interpretation of the terminology such as “substantially limits” and “major life activities”.

    In 2011, the Department of Justice (DOJ) handed down rulings following two denials of specific accommodation requests for the Law School Admissions Test (LSAT). These new regulations opened up options for students with documented disabilities to receive accommodations on standardized (high stakes) testing that will provide the student “equal access” to these tests.

    Furthermore, mitigating measures, the things that students and families did to help manage or ameliorate the disability (i.e. use tutors, take medications, etc) can no longer be used against them. This means that with the proper documentation, the likelihood of getting the requested accommodations is high.

    While there are some differences between the College Board and ACT procedures, the basic guidelines are the same. To receive an accommodation, the request must at a minimum address the following three main questions: “what,” “how,” and “why” accommodations are needed to best ensure an accurate demonstration of the students’ abilities.
  • shawbridgeshawbridge Registered User Posts: 5,505 Senior Member
    See above. In one case, we had to pull teeth to get the SAT folks to come on board while the ACTs were easy. In the other case it was the reverse. In both appeals processes, there seem to be a generalized distrust of opinions and results from professionals who were paid to provide an opinion. Instead, they seem much more swayed by the observations of teachers and others who had not been paid and had no vested interest but whose opinions were consistent with the professionals. I wrote a memo to each laying out the evidence and the argument for the accommodations. Because I had done research about the two organizations' own research on standardized test scores and test results, was clear about my experiences with the kids and the LDs' impacts, and am an able persuasive writer and speaker (at one level I do that for a living), they were both ultimately persuaded. In one case, I have kept in touch with the person I dealt with to thank her and to chronicle our son's subsequent successes.
  • 3isamagicnumber3isamagicnumber Registered User Posts: 29 New Member
    Since my original post S has finished the Woodcock Johnson comprehensive battery for submission to the College Board. The therapist has yet to finish the report for our school coordinator so she can complete the application. I have not had any experience with looking at this test but it has been very enlightening. Although, S's slightly above average overall, scores in verbal and thinking ability were 90th percentile while cognitive efficiency was 10th percentile. The counselor the the scores won't help with getting extra time as the overall is average but I read that cognitive efficiency is basically processing speed so I would think that is a strong case for extra time.

    S also had the entire academic battery portion of the test with great scores in academic achievement but I am not sure if these tests were important for applying for extra time on the SATs.

    Does anyone have any experience with how the College Board views these tests?
  • SudsieSudsie Registered User Posts: 494 Member
    Of course it is a strong case for extra time--but you need to make sure they do the report correctly. The scatter between test results is highly clinically significant and should be presented as such. Your son is not average--he is advanced in one area and delayed in another. If they did IQ testing make sure they calculate a general ability index (GAI) as if he has this much scatter a full scale IQ is invalid. Look at resources about twice exceptional students (can start on Hoagies Gifted Site) if you want to learn more. Good luck!
  • InquisitveInquisitve Registered User Posts: 75 Junior Member
    When you request accommodations be very specific about the accommodations you need. When our son first took the ACT we applied but wasn't specific. He was granted extra time. While the extra time helped him he still had trouble managing that extra time. The next time we applied by asking that he be allowed extra time and be able to take the test over multiple days. They allowed him to take the test over a 3 week period. He scheduled each subject about 3 -4 days apart and did much better on this test (4 points higher than his first). It allowed him to prepare for each subject separately.
  • 3isamagicnumber3isamagicnumber Registered User Posts: 29 New Member
    Success! S was granted 50% extra time by the College Board. I think we have to wait on some type of code to enter to register for the SAT but the upcoming AP exam accommodations are set.

    Thanks everyone for your input. I know this extra time will make a huge difference. S was so relieved to know he would have a little extra time for the writing required on the SAT and AP's.
  • annamomannamom Registered User Posts: 1,373 Senior Member
    Hi everyone,

    My question is on ACT
    did you apply for the extended time ? or did the school apply for your child?
    If there is a need for an appeal, does the parent appeal? or the school ?
    I don't want my school has a copy of the ACT result, can I request that it not be sent to them?

    Hi Inquisitve,
    How can you ask for multiple days? I am thinking to ask for multiple days, I called ACT and was told that the school has to administer the test, what about my school is not a test center, do I have to find a school who is willing to administer the test?


  • shawbridgeshawbridge Registered User Posts: 5,505 Senior Member
    @annamom,

    We had to apply for extended time, not the school. We had to appeal.

    My son was granted multiple days on both ACT and SAT tests, but it was Saturday and then Monday, I believe. The request was related to my son's situation and, in the case of the SATs, required numerous conversations. I don't know about the school situation as I believe the tests were at his school.
  • Hoosier96Hoosier96 Registered User Posts: 861 Member
    edited May 2014
    College board granted 100% for my D and multiple days; ACT had to appeal and took a formal test (ACT with no accommodations) to prove the need for them and finally approve for time and half per section over multiple days after much conversation and documentation. Both the school and parents were involved with appealing the ACT. Testing took place at current school.
  • InquisitveInquisitve Registered User Posts: 75 Junior Member
    We just asked for the extended time on multiple days on the request form. We worked out a schedule for him taking each section of the test with the teacher who proctored the exam. The only rule imposed by the ACT folks was that the entire exam be completed within 3 weeks of the original test date. My son took each section about three to fours days apart. It really helped him in preparing for the test.
  • MaineLonghornMaineLonghorn Super Moderator Posts: 36,000 Super Moderator
    My son was granted 50% extra time for the SAT (bipolar disorder and ADHD).
  • VAMom2015VAMom2015 Registered User Posts: 1,348 Senior Member
    For those who have gotten extended time for SAT when did your student actually take the SAT? My DS was given accommodations for SAT including extra time. At our school (where the regular SAT was taking place on a Saturday) DS had to miss two 1/2 days of regular school to take the SAT during school hours. While I understand the reasons for it, it means he missed several of his classes (4 to be exact) in order to take the SAT. Now he is trying to catch up on the work in those classes.

    Anyone else have this issue? I was surprised that he had to miss school for the SAT.
  • SudsieSudsie Registered User Posts: 494 Member
    We have not had that problem. D2 took it on Saturday starting at the regular time and just ended later. If your S has to take it again would be worth checking with other testing centers in your area.
  • annamomannamom Registered User Posts: 1,373 Senior Member
    Hi
    Can you submit the request for special testing (for multiple days) without the school?
    When the submit is requested with or without the school, do we have to identify the proctor or who the teacher will be....?
    Despite the school gave my child multiple days for state standardized test

    Hi Hoosier,
    When you have to appeal, did they give you the reason for the rejection? I assume you have to submit additional documentation, right? Did ACT ask your child to take the formal test? or did you decide to take the formal test to make the point?


  • annamomannamom Registered User Posts: 1,373 Senior Member
    Hi Everyone,

    One more question
    Am I right in assuming that taking the ACT without accommodation would not affect the chances for my child to get accommodation? ( I was based on Hoosier's post)
    I don't see a problem for her to get extended time as she has been receiving it for years with her IEP, but she was given multiple days two years ago with the state standardized test, however, I am nervous that ACT will say that "now you have taken ACT and you do not need the extended time, therefore, why ask for the extended time?"
    (I do anticipate her score will be low.. her sister does not have a disability, no extended time , no preparation and scored composite score of 19 in the beginning of 8th grade, I don't think she will get anywhere near 19)

This discussion has been closed.