A-Z Accommodation Glossary
Accommodated time 1.0
Accommodated time 1.25, 1.33, etc. for quizzes/tests/exams
Accommodated time 1.25, 1.33, etc., while considering Universal Design
Afternoon exams only: See “Morning exams only”
American Sign Language (ASL) Interpreter
Assignment extensions up to five (5) days
Audio Recorded Lectures
Computerized Notetaker (Captioning)
Cue sheet (subject to approval by SAS and faculty)
Digital Audio Recorder
Evening exams only: See “Morning exams only”
High-level Human Captioning/Transcription of audio/video course content
Live Captioning of synchronous real-time audio/video course content (Zoom)
Minimal walking distances
Morning exams only
Multiple-choice answers directly on exam paper
Peer-Provided Lecture Notes
Speech-to-text - Dictation Software (Dragon)
Student may write no more than one exam per day
White noise and/or background music
Commonly used acronyms:
AODA – Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act
CAT – Centre for Academic Testing (Peterborough)
DEC – Durham Exam Centre
SAS – Student Accessibility Services
Student receives equivalent to the class writing time (1.0), which in essence serves as a placeholder to write in-person at the CAT/DEC, when these centres are operational. The CAT and DEC provide a quieter writing environment with fewer stimuli than larger writing spaces.
Accommodated time for quizzes, tests & exams is not intended for students to have more time to complete their tests. The amount of accommodated time students receive is informed both by their disability documentation and their lived experience of a disability. Accommodated time compensates students for the time they lose during a test while coping with functional limitations that stem from their disability.
Considering this information in the context of academic requirements, SAS Advisors grant students enough accommodated time to address the barriers that students experience, without giving them academic advantage. The student has accommodated time to be calculated and added beyond the standard time period set by faculty for the exam.
The mathematical equation is the number of minutes of the original quiz/test/exam multiplied by the accommodated time, then divided by 60, to calculate the total number of minutes.
Students must notify faculty of their accommodated time at least 2 weeks prior to the quiz/test/exam, via “Notify My Profs” on the SAS Portal, or by booking at the CAT/DEC when the centres are operational.
Faculty are responsible for ensuring the accommodated time factor is calculated and included in the quiz/test/exam, when hosted online. Refer to the accommodated chart on the SAS website under Faculty Resources.
Students have accommodated time to be calculated and amended for their overall exam time. If all students are given a window of time to complete the exam (i.e., 24 hours, 72 hours, or more), then universal design would apply and accommodated time would not need to be factored in.
Research suggests that up to 1.5 accommodated time is sufficient to address most exam-related barriers experienced by university students with disabilities.
Students have a duty to notify faculty of their accommodated time, as listed above.
Faculty ensures that students receive either accommodated time, or universal design time, whichever is greater.
Alternative Format is used to note a students need for an alternative 'format' of what would traditionally be paper-based quiz, test or exam. Often times this involves the use of a conversion-ready, electronic documents - but may also note the need for enlarged print or other (Braille, for example) formats based on students need. Wherever possible, plain-text (Microsoft Word) documents are the preferred alternative format. This allows for the text to be manipulated, enlarged and split as necessary. It is for these Alternative Format purposes that the CAT requires professors to upload an electronic copy of their test or exam to the SAS Faculty Portal.
The use of ASL interpreters is a highly specialized accommodation for students who are Deaf or hard of hearing and whose first language is American Sign Language. Professional interpreters are provided by SAS. Because of the work involved, two interpreters are sometimes required for a lecture, for back-up support of terminology, and for relief from the effort of continuous ASL interpretation.
Students with this accommodation may periodically need flexibility with assignment deadlines due to the nature of their documented disability. Granting a reasonable extension (up to 5 days) enables the student to complete the course requirement when they would be unable to do so otherwise. This accommodation may be recommended for students who experience fluctuating and unpredictable periods of ill health associated with certain chronic health conditions, mental health disabilities, or resulting from periods of adjustment to new medication or other treatments.
Students are expected to request an extension for an assignment prior to the original due date with as much advance notification as possible.
The use of an audio recording device for lecture or seminar material may be implemented to compensate for challenges with short-term memory and/or working memory, issues with focused and/or sustained attention, slow information processing speed, sensory loss, reduced fine motor coordination, or physical inability to write or type.
Students must agree to and sign an Audio Recording Contract, which outlines how this accommodation may and may not be used in accordance with the AODA, while respecting the Intellectual Property Rights to the material which rest with the faculty member. Recordings are used for personal study only, cannot be shared, must be kept secure, and must be destroyed at the end of the course.
Students are advised to speak with faculty regarding this accommodation, and are responsible for bringing their own recording device to class (for example, a digital audio recorder, Livescribe Smartpen or other recording device indicated on their Accommodation Plan).
With this documented need and approved accommodation, use of a non-programmable calculator is permitted during tests and exams. Students are advised to speak with faculty regarding this accommodation in advance of scheduled tests/exams.
A computer can provide assistance for various disabilities such as limited dexterity, chronic pain, learning disabilities and visual disabilities. Students provide their own computers for use during lectures, seminars and labs.
Computers at the CAT/DEC are not connected to the internet, and are to be used for word processing purposes only during tests and exams. If a student requires adaptive technology for word processing, these particular programs will be listed as separate accommodations and will be provided at the CAT/DEC. Students are not permitted to use their own personal computers when writing at the CAT/DEC.
Produces a real-time summary of what is said in class (but not verbatim) using an ordinary laptop computer – sometimes linked to a second laptop for the student to read from. The laptops can be connected by cable, wireless or Bluetooth networking or linked to a braille machine. The notetaker provides a copy of the lecture transcript to the student afterwards.
Students liaise with the computer notetaking provider at Trent.
Produces a real-time, verbatim summary of what is said during an in-person lecture, lab or seminar, and is subsequently available in the recording of a Zoom Live Session, should it be made available.
Students with this accommodation request live captioning through the form available in the myTrent Portal > Support > Accessibility > Live Captioning Request Form. Must be at least 72 hours prior to a live Zoom session. At least 24 hours’ notice must be provided for cancellations by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
Faculty have the option to enable the “Auto-transcription” option under the “Live Transcript” button in their meeting. This will provide real-time captions during the meeting with an accuracy level of 80-90%. All participants and the host can hide the captioning during the meeting. For more information about this option visit IT’s Zoom - Faculty – Live Captioning User Guide.
Should a faculty member receive an accommodation letter from a student that requires live-captioning, captioning does not have to be requested on behalf of the student. The student is responsible for requesting these services through the designated form.
If a session is to be live-captioned, a professional captioner will attend the zoom meeting at the designated start time. They will then send a message to the faculty member privately requesting that they be assigned the role of “captioner”. Please refer to the Faculty - Zoom User Guide for instructions. Faculty are to notify students of any cancelled zoom sessions with at least 24 hours’ notice, so that the live-captioning request can be cancelled by the student.
A cue sheet is used by SAS students whose spontaneous memory retrieval is impaired due to a disability. The cue sheet is not a substitute for studying for the course material, and it does not include answers to quiz/test/exam questions. In addition, the cue sheet is not a list of course notes or course slides, and does not list specific facts, details, or concepts upon which students are being tested for their recall.
Cue sheets may include acronyms, pictures, acrostics, visual chains, mnemonics, mind maps, diagrams, or other symbols, and must only include cues to learned information that the student cannot retrieve. The cue sheet will make sense to the student, but because of its layout it would not be useful to other students in the course.
A student must submit their draft cue sheet for approval to their SAS Advisor at least seven days before the exam. The student’s SAS Advisor reviews the draft cue sheet. When satisfied, the draft is emailed to faculty for final approval. Faculty are within their right to disallow a student the use of a cue sheet that presents any risk to academic integrity, and can request additional editing by the student.
Students must review the Cue Sheet Procedure with their SAS Advisor. Final draft to be emailed to Advisor at least seven days prior to the test date. Revise as necessary when instructed to do so by faculty.
Faculty review the cue sheet draft when emailed from SAS Advisor. Email approval or request another draft to student and SAS Advisor, until a final draft is reached. SAS Advisor to email the final approved version to faculty and to the CAT/DEC (if writing in-person).
Digital audio recording of lectures may be recommended for students with documented sensory, physical health, mental health or cognitive disabilities. This accommodation is provided in accordance with the Customer Service and Access to Information Standards under the AODA. A full description of student responsibilities is provided on the SAS website’s Faculty Resources page.
Students provide their own recorder, must read and sign an Audio Recording Contract with their SAS Advisor, and abide by the terms of their contract.
A distraction reduced testing environment is provided by the CAT and DEC. Distinct from a lecture hall, classroom, or laboratory space, the CAT & DEC are equipped to help limit auditory and visual distractions, interruptions, and other environmental influences when students are writing in-person tests/exams.
Students with this accommodation must book their in-person tests and exams at the CAT/DEC at least 2 weeks prior to the test date, and/or 2 weeks prior to the beginning of an exam period.
Students provide their own ergonomic equipment (example, keyboard, mouse, chair, back support) in order to create an environment that is well-suited to the student’s physical needs. Used for in-class sessions and at the CAT/DEC.
A wireless assistive hearing device that transmits sounds directly from the source of the receiver. Can be used to improve the use of hearing aids, a cochlear implant, or on its own without either device. FM systems work to reduce background noise and are provided by the student.
Uses human resources to add captioning to recorded content. Human captioning has a 99% accuracy level. This service will only be provided within Trent’s streaming platform Yuja and upon email request to email@example.com from a faculty member who has received a letter of accommodation from the SAS that states "High-level Human Captioning / Transcription of audio / video course content".
Faculty must email the name of the video(s) to be human captioned. If there are no students registered with SAS that require this accommodation in the course, the video will be referred to the auto-captioning options.
An approved accommodation that is applicable only to in-person tests/exams written at the CAT/DEC. Due to a range of needs, the students may be in a room alone so as to not disrupt other students. For example, students who use speech-to-text software while writing tests and exams.
Students must confirm their need to write their test/exam in an individual room when they book to write their test/exam at the CAT/DEC. The same invigilation guidelines apply.
An alternative to fluorescent lighting, an incandescent lamp is provided by the CAT/DEC for in-person tests and exams for students with this accommodation.
Live captioning is available in real time by professional captioners, and is subsequently available in the recording of a Zoom Live Session, should the recording be made available.
Students who are registered with SAS and who require this accommodation must request live captioning through the form available on the myTrent Portal at least 72 hours prior to a live session.
Faculty - No SAS Accommodation Request
Faculty have the option to enable the “Auto-transcription” option under the “Live Transcript” button in their meeting. This will provide real-time captions during the meeting with an accuracy level of 80-90%. All participants and the host can hide the captioning during the meeting. For more information about this option please visit IT’s Zoom - Faculty – Live Captioning User Guide.
Faculty - SAS Accommodation Request
Live captioning does NOT have to be requested on behalf of the student, as student completes a request form via myTrent. A professional captioner will attend the zoom meeting at the designated start time. Captioner will then send a message to the faculty member privately requesting that they be assigned the role of “captioner”. Please refer to IT’s Faculty - Zoom User Guide for instructions. Ensure that the professional captioner is placed in the same breakout room as the student that requires this accommodation. Faculty are to notify students of any cancelled zoom sessions with at least 24 hours’ notice, so that the Live Captioning request can be cancelled by the student.
The Livescribe Smartpen is an assistive technology device that facilitates the notetaking and learning process.
A Smartpen consists of an infrared camera that captures and recreates handwriting as the student takes notes with the pen, and has a built-in microphone that can simultaneously record audio. When the audio recording is enabled, the student's handwritten notes are synchronized with the audio recordings precisely capturing and linking what was said to what student wrote down.
When it comes time for review, the student has access to the audio that was recorded so that they can listen again to the recorded audio, add additional notes that may be of significance, fill in missing information, and review what they have already written.
Students purchase their Smartpen and notebooks for use in class. They must sign an Audio Recording Contract with SAS that outlines the student's responsibility regarding the handling of audio recordings. Students agree that the audio recordings are for their exclusive use only. They are not to share the recordings, nor are they permitted to upload/post or otherwise disseminate the audio recordings anywhere online, and they must delete the content at the end of term.
When exams are held in various locations, a student requires minimal walking distances due to physical health/mobility needs.
Students must contact faculty to request a shift to the University’s exam start time to their accommodated time of day (for example, rescheduling an 8:00 am exam to 12:00 pm if the student has an accommodation of “Afternoon Exams Only”).
Students begin writing exams at 8:00 a.m., 11:00 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. (unless they have time-of-day accommodations). However, exams scheduled at 7:00 p.m. must be scheduled to begin earlier in order for the student’s exam to be completed by 10:00 p.m. See example below for a three-hour exam:
1.25 accommodated time is 3 hours and 45 min (therefore a 6:15 p.m. start for a 7:00 p.m. exam, to be finished by 10:00 p.m.)
1.5 accommodated time is 4 hours and 30 min (therefore a 5:30 p.m. start for a 7:00 p.m. exam, to be finished by 10:00 p.m.)
2.0 accommodated time is 6 hours (therefore a 4:00 p.m. start for 7:00 p.m. exam, to be finished by 10:00 p.m.)
Students must notify and liaise with faculty at least two weeks prior to an exam, to ensure that their time-of-day accommodation is met. Students understand that while the content being tested is the same, the exam format may be different.
Faculty to work with student to schedule an exam that aligns with the student’s time-of-day accommodation. Faculty to provide an earlier exam start time for students writing an evening exam with accommodated time. At faculty’s discretion, they can request that the student complete an exam confidentiality form addressing academic integrity. Faculty must protect the academic integrity of the exam, and thus may opt to set a different format and different questions to test the same content.
When a student needs to use this accommodation, it is imperative that the student discuss it ahead of time with their faculty, which will enable faculty to prepare for appropriate marking.
Notetaking involves active listening, observing, processing of information, recording the relevant information in written form and the ability to review the information. Each step is essential. Some students are unable to perform certain steps, and thus student volunteers are requested in the students’ class to upload their notes. The volunteers upload notes and the student can access notes through the SAS student portal.
Students request this accommodation via the SAS student portal, which automatically generates an email request to faculty.
Faculty are asked to make a non-identifying announcement to the class, for a volunteer notetaker. A sample announcement for requesting a volunteer is available with the student’s request for a notetaker (received by faculty via email).
For students writing an exam who cannot sit for long periods of time, who need to change position frequently, and/or who experience discomfort/pain from regularly provided classroom furniture at the CAT/DEC. Provided by the CAT/DEC.
Some students may require preferred seating in the classroom in order to best support their classroom experience. Students who are visually impaired, Deaf or hard of hearing, or who have difficulty with concentration and distractibility may choose to sit near the front of the class. Some students may place themselves close to an exit due to their anxiety or need of quick access to a washroom. An accessible table can be used to provide space for priority seating for students with disabilities.
A scribe works one-on-one with the student, to write down the student's answers completely verbatim during a test/exam. The student may dictate their responses by speech, assistive communication device, pointing, or through a sign language interpreter. Students must indicate appropriate punctuation, new paragraphs, and general organizational directions; and be prepared to spell words that are unfamiliar to the scribe.
This accommodation is usually approved when technological alternatives, such as text-to-speech or dictation software, are not feasible.
Scribes must not assist the student in any way. They must not suggest answers, offer strategies or clues, indicate correct or incorrect answers, or instruct the student to redo or review any part of their answer or exam.
Speech-to-text software, also known as dictation or speech recognition software, supports students by converting spoken words into typed text. This is most often used by students with learning or physical disabilities to 'talk out' content using their voice rather than traditional mouse/keyboard input. Modern day AI-powered personal digital assistants such as Siri, Cortana, 'Hey Google' and Amazon Alexa have brought speech recognition technologies to the everyday and are useful far beyond baisc transcription of text. Speech-to-text software is a productivity tool as much as it is an assistive technology and can be used by anyone on either desktop or mobile platforms.
Many modern speech-to-text applications (Google Voice Typing, for example) require an internet connection to make use of dictation supports. Students with an exam accommodation for speech-to-text are required to use Dragon in an offline environment at the CAT/DEC.
CAT and DEC invigilators can provide a spelling dictionary for students who have this accommodation. It provides a list of words without definitions, so that students can check their spelling during a test/exam. Questions/concerns can be directed to the student’s SAS Advisor via firstname.lastname@example.org.
Exams are split into separate sections with a break(s) in between. Breaks vary based on student need; however, the exam start time and end time must remain within any accommodated time.
If a student contacts faculty about a split exam, faculty need to communicate with the student on the best approach for the exam, including the number of sections and the length of break(s) required. Students are not permitted to return to previously completed sections of their exam.
If a student has an accommodation of ‘no more than one exam per day’ and has two university-scheduled exams in one day, the student must choose to email one faculty member to request that that exam shift to the next available day.
Student contacts faculty member about exam scheduling needs.
Faculty to assist with a plan to write on an alternate day and request that the student complete an exam confidentiality form addressing academic integrity (based on faculty discretion).
Text-to-speech is a literacy support software converts digital text into spoken audio output using speech synthesis that "reads" aloud to students who have difficulty understanding, retaining and processing written information, and/or who more easily process and understand material that is spoken aloud to them.
Kurzweill 3000 and Texthelp's Read&Write are popular stand-alone applications and may be noted on a students accommodation plan and used at the university's Exam Centre's to provide this support in an exam setting.
Students, staff and faculty are free to enjoy the benefits of Read&Write on the desktop platform of your choice (Windows, Mac & Chrome). Trent’s licensing covers any and all devices for unrestricted access to all of Read&Write's premium features. More information on Read&Write and how to access the software can be found on our Read&Write page.
To maintain academic integrity, a student not is allowed on any electronic device that connects to the internet while writing in-person tests or exams at the CAT/DEC, unless specified to the class by the faculty member.
Student submits audio files to the CAT/DEC at least 7 days prior to an in-person test/exam, so that CAT/DEC staff can screen the recording and verify that it contains only white noise or music (commercial CD, MP3 files).