Testing Procedures for Accommodated Exams
A student's testing accommodations will be indicated on his/her Accommodation Letter(s) issued by the Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD).SSD recommends that students schedule private consultations with their instructors at the start of the semester to discuss the arrangements for accommodated exams, as well as any other accommodations indicated on the letters. In general, making the necessary arrangements for testing accommodations is a responsibility shared by the student, the instructor, and SSD (see the topics listed below for additional information). Questions or concerns regarding testing accommodations should be addressed to the staff of the SSD office located in the Lee Drain Annex building (next to Farrington) or by telephone: 936-294-3512.
Extended Time for Exams
Extended Time for Exams
The amount of time allotted to students approved for this accommodation is typically either time and a half (1.5x) or double time (2x), as indicated on the Accommodation Letter. The extended time factor is applied to the base time allotted by the instructor for the classroom (or on-line) exam (e.g., time and a half for a 60-minute exam would be 90 minutes). A student approved only for extended time (not a testing site with limited distractions) may take classroom exams in the classroom setting, provided that arrangements can be made for the extended time. In the event that class scheduling conflicts preclude the allotment of extended time in the classroom setting, SSD requests that the instructor locate an alternative testing venue for the accommodated student in the academic building or department in which the class is held. The SSD office may also be used as the alternative testing venue in such an instance, provided that the academic department is unable to accommodate the extended time format due to scheduling conflicts (see SSD Testing Facilities and Procedures below).
Testing Site with Limited Distractions
A testing site with limited distractions is a private room or office (separate from the classroom) that is relatively free of ambient noise and social interaction and furnished with adequate lighting and desk space. SSD will approve this accommodation for students whose disabilities render them especially vulnerable to distractions in a testing situation. With regard to the identification of a limited-distractions test site, SSD requests that the instructor first attempt to locate an appropriate venue for the accommodated student in the academic building or department in which the class is held and to make the necessary proctoring arrangements (e.g., with a departmental teaching assistant or support staff). In the event that an appropriate venue is not available and/or proctoring arrangements cannot be made in the academic department, the SSD office may serve as the alternative testing venue with advance notification on the part of the student and instructor (see SSD Testing Facilities and Procedures below).
Note: A hallway or corridor in an academic building is not considered to be an appropriate venue for the purposes of limited-distractions testing.
Adaptive Technology for Test-taking Purposes
Depending on the nature of the student's disability, SSD may approve the use of adaptive technology for test-taking purposes. Among the technologies available at the Adaptive Technology Lab in the SSD office are CCTV video magnifiers and various software programs, such as screen magnifier/reader and scan-read, text-to-speech software. Students approved by SSD for the use of such technologies on exams should, in most instances, make the necessary scheduling arrangements to take their exams at the SSD's Adaptive Technology Lab (see SSD Testing Facilities and Procedures below). It should also be noted, however, that the ADA workstations in the Computer Labs and the Newton-Gresham Library are equipped with screen magnifier/reader software and other adaptive technologies (see Adaptive Technology Available on the SSD home page).
SSD Testing Facilities and Procedures
The Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) has testing facilities for accommodated exams on the Huntsville campus, The Woodlands Center (TWC)-SHSU, and the College of Osteopathic Medicine (COM). These facilities include testing rooms with reduced distractions and adaptive technologies for test-taking purposes. The designated testing venue for courses held on the Huntsville campus is the SSD Office, located in the Lee Drain Annex, next to the Farrington Building. T testing facilities, including the responsibilities of the student, instructor, and SSD staff, are detailed below. Please note that the SSD Office on the Huntsville campus is the point of contact for scheduling test appointments and submitting exams for the Huntsville campus, TWC, and the COM.
- The student is responsible for discussing the testing arrangements with the instructor prior to each scheduled exam.
- The student is responsible for contacting the SSD Office on the Huntsville campus in person or by telephone at 936-294-3512 to schedule a test appointment for either the SSD Office, the TWC Testing Suite (see below for exceptions to in-person or telephone scheduling), or the COM. Test appointments for courses held on the Huntsville campus will be scheduled for the SSD Office, test appointments for courses held at TWC will be scheduled for the TWC Testing Suite, and test appointments held at the COM will be scheduled for the COM 110B or COM 110C. Advance notification on the student's part is required for scheduling purposes. To schedule test appointments in the Fall and Spring semesters and Summer sessions, the student must contact the SSD Office at least three (3) working days prior to the date of the classroom exam (e.g., by 5:00 pm on Wednesday for an exam to be taken the following Monday), ten (10) working days in the case of final exams. For the purposes of the mini session (i.e., mini-mester), at least two (2) working days' advance notice is required for scheduling test appointments, five (5) working days in the case of final exams. The student is strongly encouraged to schedule all of his/her exam appointments for the semester early in the term, upon receiving the exam dates from his/her instructors. Late scheduling requests due to mitigating circumstances will be considered on a case-by-case basis, provided that the student first meet with the SSD Administrative Associate or his/her Accommodation Counselor to discuss the matter and review the SSD Testing Procedures
The student is expected to schedule his/her test appointment to coincide with the date and time of the classroom exam, unless a conflict with his/her course schedule or the SSD's testing schedule precludes such an arrangement. In the latter event, SSD recommends that the student schedule the test appointment at a time approximate to that of the classroom exam. It should be noted that the SSD Office on the Huntsville campus is available during business hours only, i.e., Monday through Friday from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm. Test appointments for the TWC Testing Suite and the COM are to be coordinated through the SSD Office on the Huntsville campus. Due to the aforementioned scheduling constraints, SSD is unable to guarantee that a test appointment will be available to coincide exactly with the time of the classroom exam. Test appointments at the SSD are scheduled on a first-come, first-served basis. SSD recommends that students provide as much advance notice as possible for the scheduling of final exams, given the demands on SSD's testing facilities during finals week. Test appointments must be scheduled in person at the SSD Office (Lee Drain Annex) on the Huntsville campus or by telephone at 936-294-3512 (unless an alternative means of scheduling has been identified, as in the case of a student whose disability prevents him/her from communicating by telephone).
- The student is responsible for apprising the SSD staff of his/her need for special testing arrangements, such as the assistance of a reader and/or scribe or the use of a computer and/or adaptive technology, upon scheduling his/her test appointment. Note: Such accommodations require prior SSD approval.
- The student is responsible for providing the instructor with advance notice of the date, time, and place of each test appointment scheduled with SSD. With regard to test appointments in the Fall and Spring semesters and the Summer sessions, the student should notify the instructor at least three (3) working days prior to the appointment date, ten (10) working days in the case of final exams. For the purposes of the mini session (i.e., mini-mester), at least two (2) working days' advance notice to the instructor is required, five (5) working days in the case of final exams. It is therefore recommended that the student notify the instructor by voice mail and/or e-mail of the test appointment date and time upon scheduling with the SSD Office, or, in the event that the student has scheduled test appointments for the entire semester at the outset of the term, to provide the instructor with a timely reminder of each appointment. The student is further advised to request that the instructor deliver or forward a copy of the exam and a completed, SSD Testing Form to the SSD Office on the Huntsville campus at least one (1) working day prior to the test appointment date, three (3) working days in the case of final exams (see Instructor's Responsibilities, below).
- The student is responsible for arriving at the testing venue on time for his/her test appointment. If the student is more than twenty (20) minutes late for the appointment, he/she will not be allowed to take the exam. In such an event or in the case of a no show, the student is required to obtain the instructor's written permission in hard copy or e-mail and to submit same to SSD in order to reschedule the test appointment with SSD. A student arriving for a test appointment up to twenty (20) minutes late will be seated for the exam but will have his/her test time docked accordingly, unless the student has been previously approved by SSD for tardy arrivals as an accommodation.
- The student is responsible for notifying the SSD Office as soon as possible in the event that he/she is unable to attend a test appointment due to an illness, emergency, or other personal reasons. In such an instance, the student is required to obtain the instructor's written permission in hard copy or e-mail and to submit same to SSD in order to reschedule the test appointment with SSD.
- The student is responsible for observing the institutional standards regarding academic honesty and integrity while testing at SSD facilities. In the event that a student is suspected of academic dishonesty, SSD staff will confiscate any materials in question, mark the item on which the student was working when said materials were confiscated, and allow the student to complete the exam. Once the exam has been completed, the SSD staff will notify the instructor of the suspected offense and forward a report on the incident and any confiscated materials to the instructor for adjudication.
- The student is responsible for adhering to the rules of classroom conduct while testing at SSD facilities. The student will not be allowed to have food or drink (other than a clear, unmarked water bottle) available or to take multiple restroom breaks during the testing session unless such accommodations have been previously approved by SSD for medical reasons.
- The student is responsible for providing routine testing tools and materials (e.g., writing instrument, Scantron form, blue book, etc.) and being familiar with the operation of any adaptive technology approved by SSD as a testing accommodation.
- The student is required to surrender cell phones and other electronic devices, personal effects, and any study materials not authorized by the instructor for use on the exam to SSD staff for storage during the testing session.
- The instructor is responsible for completing the SSD Testing Form, available in hard copy at the SSD Office on the Huntsville campus or in electronic format from the SSD home page. The instructor is advised to indicate on the SSD Testing Form whether he/she or a teaching assistant will collect the completed exam in person from SSD staff or whether the exam is to be returned to the instructor by SSD via fax, e-mail attachment, campus mail, sealed envelope sent with the student, or, in the case of TWC exams, left with the One-Stop Shop or in the instructor's mailbox in the Faculty Support Center (see the SSD Testing Form for a complete list of options for receiving completed exams).
- The instructor is responsible for delivering or forwarding the exam and the SSD Testing Form to the SSD Office on the Huntsville campus at least one (1) working day prior to the student's test appointment date, three (3) working days in the case of final exams. Such test materials may be hand delivered by the instructor or a teaching assistant to the SSD Office, faxed to 936-294-3794, or e-mailed to email@example.com. When sending an exam and the SSD Testing Form by e-mail attachment, the instructor is advised to request a receipt confirmation. Please note that the SSD Office on the Huntsville campus is the point of contact for submitting exams for both the Huntsville campus and TWC.
- The instructor is responsible for making the necessary arrangements to collect the exam once an SSD staff member has notified him/her of its completion, unless the instructor has indicated a preferred method of receiving the completed exam from SSD on the SSD Testing Form (see above).
- The SSD staff is responsible for proctoring the exam so as to ensure the integrity of the testing process. A video monitoring system is used for this purpose.
- SSD is responsible for facilitating the approved testing accommodations, such as the provision of a reader or scribe or access to adaptive technologies.
- SSD is responsible for notifying the instructor in the event that a student is suspected of academic dishonesty on an exam (see Student's Responsibilities, above).
- SSD is responsible for notifying the instructor once the student has completed the exam. If the instructor has indicated a preferred method of receiving the completed exam (e.g., fax, e-mail, campus mail, sealed envelope sent with the student—see Instructor's Responsibilities, above)), SSD will make arrangements to return the exam by the method indicated. Note: SSD does not hand deliver completed exams to instructors.
Blackboard and Other Online Exams
Students approved by SSD for testing accommodations are entitled to receive such accommodations for on-line exams and quizzes, including those administered on Blackboard or on platforms other than Blackboard.
For assistance with extending the timer on a Blackboard exam or quiz or enabling the use of adaptive software ((such as screen magnifier/reader or voice recognition software) or other accessibility features in Respondus LockDown Browser or ProctorFree, instructors are advised to contact SHSU Online, i.e., the DELTA Center, at 936-294-2780 or firstname.lastname@example.org. To request adjustments of this type for exams or quizzes administered on platforms other than Blackboard, such as a publishing company's website, instructors are advised to contact the web/platform administrator.
It should be noted that SHSU students requesting accommodations for on-line courses must first register with SSD and submit documentation of their impairments consistent with the SSD General Documentation Guidelines. Students are advised to contact SSD at 936-294-3512 (TDD 936-294-3786) to schedule a disability intake appointment (or telephone interview in the case of distance learners). Documentation may be submitted by fax (936-294-3794), e-mail (email@example.com), or regular mail (Services for Students with Disabilities, Box 2091 SHSU, Huntsville, Texas 77341-2091). If the student is approved for accommodations, SSD will send an accommodation letter to the instructor of the on-line course at the student's request. The accommodation letter will detail the specific accommodations that the student has been approved to receive.