About Accommodations

Accommodations are changes in the classroom or testing environment to give a student with a disability a fair chance.

They are meant to help "accommodate" a student's challenges that result from their disability, and come in many shapes and sizes.

  • Students with IEPs or 504 Plans may get Accommodations

  • This means the school or teacher can change the classroom environment or the conditions of the test to allow them to participate.

  • This includes class tests, state assessments and standardized tests like the SAT or ACT.

  • Your IEP Team can discuss which Accommodations would help your child most. There are many kinds available!

  • You have to make sure they are written into your child's IEP or 504 plan.

Here are some examples:

  • Extra time to take tests or do homework

  • Extra staff, like an aide or someone to read instructions or take notes

  • Communication devices or other equipment to help with sensory or physical needs

  • Frequent breaks

Here's what you can do:

  • Talk to your child's IEP team and make sure that they have considered all accommodations that could help your child. Be sure that they are written into the IEP.

  • Make sure that your child is using all the accommodations that are written into their IEP. (Many times, the student and teacher just forget! It's worth asking your child often if they're using the ones they're supposed to have!)

  • Check for ones that you may not know are options. See a complete list of accommodations on pages 5-11 of the IEP Form. Click on the link below to download it. (It will open in a new tab or appear in the bottom corner of your screen.)

These are the ones listed on the College Board's website:


  • Large print (14 pt., 20 pt., other)

  • Reader (Note:Reader reads entire test)

  • Use of a highlighter

  • Sign/orally present instructions

  • Visual magnification (magnifier or magnifying machine)

  • Colored overlays

  • Braille

  • Braille graphs

  • Braille device for written responses

  • MP3 audio test format

  • Assistive technology–compatible test format


  • Verbal; dictated to scribe

  • Tape recorder

  • Computer without spell-check/grammar/cut-and-paste features

  • Record answers in test booklet

  • Large-block answer sheet

  • Four-function calculator (use of basic four-function calculator on test sections that do not permit use of a calculator)


  • Frequent breaks

  • Extended time

  • Multiple day (may or may not include extra time)

  • Specified time of day


  • Small group setting

  • Private room

  • Alternative test site (with proctor present)

  • Preferential seating

Source: College Board