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Getting Extra Time for the SAT
for Your Dyslexic Child   (as of 2005 SAT)

If done prior to the PSAT, the student can possibly be given extra time for that test as well.

The goal is to show that the student needs extra time on the SAT because they have a history of needing time to get good grades. Also, the goal of the diagnosis is to show that there is a difference in the high quality of their performance and their poor test scores when timed. Usually only requests of 50% extra time are granted. The reports you write may be in bullet form or narrative. (I wrote at length and made everything as official as possible, obtaining signatures and seals whenever possible.) These first sections (I, II, III, IV) coincide with the application requests. The last section (V) has examples, not requirements, of things that you may include in your application packet to validate your request that extra time is needed.

I. Current Application

Please be sure to check the date of the application form or forms you are using — these can change from year to year so make usre you are using current documents.

II. College Board for Educators

Here are a couple of resource links I found helpful:

Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD)
Documentation Guidelines

  1. State the specific disability as diagnosed
  2. Be current (The diagnosis must be within 5 years.)
  3. Provide relevant educational, developmental and medical history
  4. Describe the comprehensive testing and techniques used to arrive at the diagnosis (copies of diagnosticians’ reports)
  5. Describe the functional limitations supported by the test results
  6. Describe the specific accommodations requested, including the amount of extended time required if applicable State why the disability qualifies the student for such accommodations on standardized tests, and
  7. Establish the professional credentials of the evaluator including information about license or certification and area of specialization.

III. Results from Diagnostician

Send copies of reports with the identification of the tests and testers.

  1. Initial report (ours was from Scottish Rite)
  2. Re-test report from diagnostician

IV. Education and Developmental History

I wrote this section of the report I was sending since I had first hand knowledge of her education as well as developmental history. Include copies of records to validate reports.

  1. Developmental History
    1. Reached Developmental milestones at appropriate ages
      (list some: crawled at __ mos.; walked at __ mos., etc.)
    2. Was diagnosed with dyslexia at ____ age.
    3. Used how many tutors and programs to help
      (write out in chronological order and be specific with dates)
  2. Educational History
    1. Home-school records, copies of Iowa Tests, etc.
    2. Difficulty in learning specifics (list: numbers, addition)
    3. List names of tutors and years used, etc.
    4. Eye doctor exams & tests that show normal vision
    5. Needed untimed assignments & tests for which classes
    6. Phonics programs used (copies of reports from the centers and tutors)
    7. School name — teachers expressed concern over fluency; counselors wrote letters confirming parental requests; copies of transcripts and report cards compared to standardized testing results
    8. Personal accommodations from applicable school years: uses her own color coding system; studying twice as long to make excellent grades, etc.
    9. PSAT — what low percentile compared to excellent grades
    10. Timed vs. untimed percentile differences (I had an untimed standardized test and a timed standardized test to make comparisons)
  3. Medical History

    I wrote this report as well and backed it up with accurate records of dates and ages and letters for doctors that concurred.

    1. No complications in pregnancy
    2. Full term
    3. Eye surgery
    4. No excessive absences from school (typical colds and childhood diseases, tonsils removed, etc.)
    5. Healthy — physical, visual, & auditory (no problems that would interfere with education)

V. Reports that may be included to support your request:

  1. Signed doctor report stating history of dyslexia
  2. Visual report for glasses or screening
  3. Hearing report (screening that was normal)
  4. Letter from school with history of accommodations
    Summary of Classroom Modifications for Students with Learning Differences
    List each classroom that allowed extra time: i.e.:
    • American History
      Extra time of up to 100% to complete tests. Teacher: Mrs.________
    • Pre-calculus tests
      The math teacher offered extra time for all students in the class of up to 50%. The student used this opportunity for every exam given. Teacher — Mrs. ________
  5. Letter from previous schools’ Guidance Counselors — stating use of extra time, dropped from AP to regular classes due to time issues, repeated a grade, untimed grades soared compared to timed, etc.
  6. Individual Teacher Survey forms stating that there was a history of need for extra time. (“Teacher Survey on Student’s Classroom Learning Behavior”)
  7. Copy of Placement Test to new school showing testing discrepancy from performance quality.
  8. Copies of PSATs and Explore (ACT)
  9. Copies of IOWA Tests — some timed and one untimed
  10. Copies of transcripts of grades from all schools (I also printed out home-school transcripts. I kept very thorough and accurate records. Start these records as early as possible if you have not already.)
  11. Report stating percentile discrepancy between timed and untimed performance
  12. Reports from Learning Center and other tutors or Programs