In a win for testing accessibility, the College Board announced on Dec. 1 that it will be simplifying the process for qualified students to receive needed accommodations when taking College Board assessments. Those assessments include SAT®, PSAT™10, PSAT/NMSQT®, SAT Subject Tests™, and AP® Exams.
School testing accommodation coordinators must now answer only two questions in the affirmative for students to receive accommodations under the new policy. If the answer is yes to both “is the requested accommodation(s) in the student’s plan,” and “has the student used the accommodation(s) for school testing,” that student is instantly eligible to receive accommodations on their College Board exam. The new, expedited process is expected to reduce approval time for an “overwhelming majority of accommodation requests,” according to the College Board.
The changes will go into effect by Jan. 1, 2017, and students who have accommodations at their school through a current Individualized Education Program (IEP) or 504 Plan will automatically have those accommodations approved under the new procedure.
According to Inside Higher Ed this change has been sought after for some time and the changes appear to have strengthened accessibility in traditional brick and mortar testing environments.
What does the accessibility landscape look like for taking exams online?
ProctorU, the largest live online proctoring solution in the world, can accommodate individuals with most disabilities through one-on-one coordination with a student’s school. Because ProctorU uses human proctors that can interact with students in real time, the service is able to make unique accommodations. ProctorU also maintains a working Voluntary Product Assessment Template (VPAT), and is always refining its service to meet accessibility standards.
Users of the ProctorU service can select an integrated option that makes the entire ProctorU scheduling system accessible including larger buttons, all coloring removed, legible font size, keyboard controls and many other features. These functions follow the WCAG Level AA standard, as well as VPAT.
About College Board
The College Board is a mission-driven, not-for-profit organization that connects students to college success and opportunity.
Founded in 1900, the College Board was created to expand access to higher education. Today, the membership association is made up of over 6,000 of the world’s leading educational institutions and is dedicated to promoting excellence and equity in education.
Each year, the College Board helps more than seven million students prepare for a successful transition to college through programs and services in college readiness and college success — including the SAT and the Advanced Placement Program. The organization also serves the education community through research and advocacy on behalf of students, educators and schools.
ProctorU watches students take exams online using webcams and screen-sharing technology. The service gives students the convenience of testing at home and instructors the ability to ensure exam security.
ProctorU uses a three-step process that confirms that the student who registered for the exam is the individual who is taking the exam and is following the institution’s testing requirements. Test monitors can see the student, see what they are doing and know who they are monitoring using webcams and screen-sharing technology. ProctorU offers live, person-to-person, real-time monitoring to more than 900 colleges, universities and certification organizations.