Tests can be designed in ways that include or exclude. Many St. Olaf instructors create student assessments that are flexible and rarely require accommodations. Some assessments, however, still present barriers. You should always have the opportunity to demonstrate what you’ve learned without the design of the test being a barrier. That will be accomplished differently in different situations:
Accessible Tests in the Classroom
Increasingly, course instructors are designing tests that reduce the need for accommodations or are making arrangements for accommodations themselves. Some examples are:
- Designing tests for 30 minutes but allowing students 50 minutes to complete them.
- Giving tests online and using software to increase the time allowed for individual students.
- Assessing learning with take-home tests, papers or projects.
- Arranging quiet space in a department or office for student testing.
- Providing technology, like a computer, for taking tests.
As a result of these instructional changes, you may find that accommodations you’ve used in the past aren’t necessary.
Occasionally, it will still be necessary to obtain an Accommodation Letter allowing for extended time to complete the exam. Please speak to your Access Specialist to determine eligibility.