Colored Rulers: A Case Study on Finding a Low-Tech Solution for Completing Exams
My name is May. I am a college student with a language-based learning disability. My disability affects how and the speed at which I process information.
I was having difficulty completing exams that required a great deal of reading and writing in an allotted time period. The disabled student services office approved my accommodation request to take time and one-half in a private room for tests. The professor supported this decision. Although this accommodation allowed me to accomplish more, I still ran out of time. I had tried oral testing in the past but without success.
I went back to the disabled student services office to see if they had any other suggestions for accommodations or strategies I could use. They recommended colored rulers, which were no more than strips of colored cellophane. I place the strips over the text of the test while I read aloud to myself. To my delight this strategy was very helpful. I am now able to complete an exam within the time and one-half accommodation. This discovery is helping me with coursework in other classes as well.
This case study illustrates the following points:
- Low-tech solutions can impact a student's performance. In this case, the use of colored cellophane strips assisted with tracking and allowed the student to complete exams during the time allowed.
- Ongoing brainstorming and trouble shooting between the student, disability services staff, and instructors can often lead to a solution for a given situation, which can benefit the student in other course and employment circumstances.