Part 12 - Assessment and Accommodations

ASSESSMENT IN SPECIAL EDUCATION SERIES

Introduction

The world is full of examples of accommodations that permit people with disabilities to perform specific tasks they might not otherwise be able to. Drivers with poor vision wear glasses or contacts, elevators mark the buttons in Braille, and voters with disabilities may be given assistance by the person of their choice.

Accommodations play an important role in educational settings, too, particularly for students whose disabilities interfere with performing learning tasks (such as reading a book, taking notes in class, or writing an essay) or testing tasks (such as getting through the items within the time limit or filling in the circles on a multiple-choice test). A critical part of teaching and assessing students with disabilities, then, is providing them with accommodations that support learning and that support their ability to show what they know and can do.

But what accommodations are appropriate for which students? How do accommodations affect students’ learning and their performance on tests? This issue of NASET’s Assessment in Special Education series is written by Stephen D. Luke, Ed.D. & Amanda Schwartz, Ph.D. (and reprinted with permission of the National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities). It addresses these and other questions and explores the research base in this area. Commentary from education professionals and examples from the field are included to highlight practical tools and resources designed to help educators and families determine appropriate accommodations for students with disabilities.

To access the full issue of this month's issue of Assessment in Special Education Series, NASET members should login to view and or download a PDF file version.

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