What are accommodations and accessibility tools and how do they differ?
AccommodationsAccommodations are changes to the testing environment that make it easier for a student to demonstrate their achievement. In a MAP Growth test session, the accommodations menu is a way to track what assistance each student has received when taking a particular test. The accommodations menu does not cause any particular accessibility tool to become active, rather, when a proctor assigns an accommodation to a student's test, they are "tagging" that test with an accommodation. An accommodation must be assigned to the student before they start the test in order for it to be marked and tracked correctly.
NWEA does not place restrictions on which accommodations can be used. Please carefully consider your state and district accommodation policy, along with the accommodations given to students during instruction, so that accommodations are as consistent as possible between the classroom and assessments.
Accessibility tools are assistive technology tools that help a student interact with the test. These tools provide the actual accessibility functionality during the test, as opposed to the accommodations menu, which is a tracking tool only. Examples of assistive technology tools that have been successfully evaluated for use with MAP Growth testing include:
Accessibility tools and test aids
- Operating system tools: Windows Magnifier, Mac OS X Zoom, iPad Zoom, Chromebook Magnifier
- Purchased software: ZoomText, JAWS
- Built-in tools: Keyboard navigation, highlighter tool
How are accessibility tools used?When a student needs to use an accessibility tool during a MAP Growth test, the proctor will assign the test and also assign which accommodation the student will be using. The accessibility tool, if not built-in, will then need to be launched on the testing machine before the testing site is launched on the testing machine. This means the accommodation that the proctor selected has placed a tag on the test but the tool is providing the accessibility functionality.
For more details, see:
- How to test with JAWS screen reader
- Testing visually impaired students in MAP Growth
- About the highlighter test aid
- What is the orange dotted line?
For more detailed information regarding accommodations or accessibility tools, please see Accommodations and Accessibility.