Exam accommodations are only available to students who are registered with Disability Access Services and have documentation recommending the need for such accommodations.  Students’ approved accommodations will be listed in the instructor letter (issued by Disability Access Services) that students are to provide to each instructor.

Frequently Asked Exam Questions

What is an exam accommodation?

Exam accommodations are intended to “level the playing field.” When a disability could put a student at a disadvantage while writing an exam (compared to other students who don’t have a disability), exam accommodations are recommended. VIU policy recognizes the legal duty to provide reasonable accommodations to students with a documented disability.

What are typical exam accommodations?

This depends on the student’s documentation, and may include:

  • Extra Time –50% extra time
  • Scribe – software or a person to write or type answers as the student dictates
  • Reader – software or a person to read exam out loud
  • Computer – Use of a word processor for longer answers (with or without spell check/grammar check)
  • Room Alone – Distraction-reduced environment
  • Calculator – Calculator use for all math-related courses

Who looks after providing exam accommodations?

Exams can be written either in your department or at Assessment and Exam Invigilation Services (AEIS). You may be able to look after basic accommodations such as “extra time” yourself, if the student agrees.  You can make these arrangements directly with the student.  AEIS is also available to invigilate accommodated exams, but advance notice is needed.

How does a student arrange an accommodated exam?

Students must submit an exam request form (either electronically or by paper) for each exam written in Assessment and Exam Invigilation Services.  They require 1 weeks’ notice for midterms/quizzes. The deadline to submit requests for final exams is Nov. 20 (for Dec. finals) and March 20 (for April finals). If the student uses the online request system, you will receive an automatically-generated email in your VIU account, containing a link to the online form. Please click on the link, enter the exam information and submit the form.  If a student uses a paper request form, please fill out the required details and give the form back to the student to return. 

Who is responsible for the exam request forms?

The student is responsible for generating the request, either online or by paper.  The instructor is responsible for filling out the exam details.

How are accommodations for evening exams arranged?

It depends on the student’s approved accommodations, your thoughts regarding exam security, and what time the rest of the class starts the exam. You may be able to accommodate the student yourself. Please contact assessments@viu.ca  to discuss your situation. If necessary, they may be able to hire an invigilator to stay late.

Why do the exam requests arrive so far in advance? I haven't decided on the exam details yet.

We encourage students to submit requests early, so they don’t forget.  If you’re not sure about the details, you can ignore the email for now. The system will automatically send you a new link 5 days before the exam date.

How do I get my exam to AEIS? How far ahead do you need it?

Please deliver your exam 3 days before the scheduled exam date.  To facilitate the use of the various assistive technologies needed for exam accommodations, please email the exam (Word doc preferred) to assessments@viu.ca.  If necessary, hard copies can be dropped off in BLDG 200, Rm 214 (Reception).

How do I get the completed exam back?

Choices include picking it up from BLDG 200 in person (8:00 am to 4:00 pm), or asking the student to deliver it in a sealed envelope. Please specify on the request form where the student should take the completed exam. Please check the appropriate box on the exam request form. If you come to pick up your exam up over lunch, check ahead to make sure someone is here.  Feel free to knock on the door if it is closed.

I've changed an exam detail, but I have already completed the request form.

Contact the exam coordinator at assessments@viu.ca  for this or any other exam-related questions.

How does AEIS protect exam security?

AEIS is certified by the National College Testing Association (NCTA) as an approved testing centre. Before an exam, invigilators lock any personal items not required for the exam (backpacks, purses, cell phones, electronics, etc.) in a cupboard. They may also ask students to show us the contents of pockets, hoods, or pencil cases. If a student is approved to use a computer as an accommodation, he/she uses an account that blocks internet. When a student has back-to-back courses, AEIS may slightly adjust an exam start time if the student's "extra time" accommodation would otherwise interfere with their next class. In these cases, maximum overlap with the class is maintained. If the student ends up finishing an exam before the rest of the class starts, the invigilators would have the student remain in our area with no access to phone/internet until the class exam start time.

 

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