Assessment Accommodations: Case Studies

Read these case studies to give you an idea about how some teachers modified assessments.

Assessment Accommodations: Case Studies

Related References
Types of Assessment


Guiding Principles

States recognize the importance of the Individualized Education Program (IEP) and the IEP team in making decisions aboutaccommodations for individual students. Consider the following examples.

Case Study: Visual-Motor Coordination Difficulties
Brittany is a conscientious high school student with visual-motor coordination difficulties. In the classroom, her disability interferes with her ability to transfer informationfrom the chalkboard or overhead to a paper on her desk. Italso is hard for her to copy information from a book ontoa piece of paper; typically, she loses her place in the book.One of the accommodations that Brittany's teacher hasfound helpful is to let Brittany write all answers in hertextbook or activity book, rather than on a separate sheet.Her IEP team uses this information when considering possible accommodations for Brittany on the upcoming stateassessment. The team decides there is sufficient evidencethat Brittany will not be able to track from a test bookletto a test response form.

Because Brittany has been successful using the response accommodation of marking in theactual booklet, the team decides this also is an appropriateaccommodation for her on the state test.

Case Study: ADHD
Ten-year-old Trevor will be takingthe state assessment for the firsttime. His classroom teacher hasexpressed a concern to other IEPteam members that due to his hyperactivity and distractibility,Trevor will be unable to work continuously for a typically administered portion of the test (15-20minutes). The team discusses information that documents Trevor'sability to work in a study carreland his positive response to teachercues that redirect his attentionback to the task. Based on this information, the IEP team decidesthat Trevor should take the test ina study carrel with teacherprompts. Based on numerousclassroom observations, the schoolpsychologist shares his concernsthat Trevor's accommodationsmay distract other students whoare taking the test, and he should,therefore, be placed in a separatesetting for the assessment.

Becausethe test is not scheduled to happen for 2 months, the classroomteacher agrees to try the followingaccommodation: Trevor beginsusing a study carrel during regular classroom assessments. Theteacher observes whether these accommodations are distracting toothers. The team will make a decision regarding a setting changeat the next meeting.

Case Study: ESL, Visual Disability
Twelve-year-old Antonio is new tothe school this year. In additionto speaking English as a secondlanguage, Antonio has a visual disability that limits his ability to seeprinted text. During class sessionswhere the assignment is to workin texts and activity books, Antonio uses a magnification device. TheIEP team agrees that Antonioshould be able to use his magnifcation device for the statewidetest. They also note that Antoniotends to respond better on testswhen they are presented in his firstlanguage, Spanish.

After much discussion, the team decides thatAntonio will use the following accommodations: offer Antonio thetest in Spanish, have the test pre-recorded on audiotape, allow theuse of a magnification device, andpermit directions to be reread andrestated in Spanish.

Excerpted from Assessment Accommodations Toolkit.

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