Tests & standards

At a Glance: Types of Accommodations for Standardized Tests

By Geri Coleman Tucker

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Some kids with learning and attention issues may be allowed to use accommodations when taking standardized tests. Here are some examples of the types of accommodations available.

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What Kinds of Accommodations Are Available on Standardized Tests?

Accommodations usually fall into one of four categories. Take a look at these examples. Your child’s IEP or 504 team can help you figure out what your child needs.

How the test questions are presented to your child
• Having an administrator read the questions aloud
• Having the instructions repeated
• Enlarging the print
• Listening to an audio version of the text

How your child answers the test questions
• Using reference aids such as a glossary, multiplication tables or a calculator
• Using a computer, with or without spell-check software
• Using speech-to-text dictation software or having a person take notes

How long your child has to take the test
• Having extra time to complete the test
• Being allowed to take frequent breaks
• Taking different sections of the test on different days

Where your child takes the test
• Having access to noise-canceling headphones in a large room
• Sitting in a quiet room away from distractions
• Being in a room with a small number of students receiving similar accommodations
Graphic of What kinds of accommodations are available on standardized tests
Graphic of What kinds of accommodations are available on standardized tests

About the Author

Portrait of Geri Tucker

Geri Coleman Tucker is a freelance writer and editor and a former deputy managing editor for USA Today.

Reviewed by

Portrait of Bob Cunningham

Bob Cunningham, Ed.M., serves as advisor-in-residence on learning and attention issues for Understood.

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