Adaptation of standardized tests to the needs of ESL students and students with learning disabilities essay sample



Standardized testing was constructed to confirm the pattern “one size fits all” in education. Assignments of this kind were developed to optimize teacher’s time in checking students’ answers and to provide a fair way of examination. However, tests are not very helpful to students with special needs or to English language learners. Ideally, such students require an individualized learning plan or at least more teacher’s attention but, in the end, they will be required to perform on the same level with their peers. This evidence makes it important to adapt standardized tests to those students who may find them especially difficult.

Various accommodations may help teachers to incorporate special needs of students into the universal design of tests. ELL students shall be able to use their glossaries during testing in all subjects except for English. It may be quite difficult for them to take in a lot of specific terms from various fields as they still learn general vocabulary and conversational expressions.

Even greater adjustments shall be made for students with ADHD and other learning disabilities. Tests shall provide alternative means of expressing so that children were not confused by sophisticated questions. Moreover, they should be given more time to complete their tasks or have a test divided into sections. Probably, it will be easier for special children to pass the examination in several stages. Students who are easily distracted shall be taken to the room where there are no objects that will drag their attention.

These are the basic options for adaptation of standardized tests to the students who cannot perform as successful as their peers due to their special needs. They shall be by no means ignored by the teachers as special children must have the same access to education as their peers.


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