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Taking The Sats/acts


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#1 merrymom1013

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Posted 15 May 2008 - 07:24 PM

My daughter is beginning the process of applying for accommodations on the SATs & ACTs. From a yahoo support group, I have learned of another student who was denied accommodations on the SAT, though he did get some for the ACT. This was despite a great letter from his sleep doc explaining the narcolepsy diagnosis & supporting the need for extra time for testing. Evidently, they were stuck on wanting the kind of testing used to diagnose a learning disability.
My question for all of you- have any of you gotten accommodations on the SAT or ACT? Have you applied & been denied? What things helped or hindered the process? It might be helpful for us to have that kind of information available when we, or our kids, go through the process


#2 Toph4er

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Posted 17 May 2008 - 01:09 AM

I get my SAT/AP/etc. testing in the afternoon, though I haven't sought for extra time. Just being able to take it at 12 rather than 8 helps a lot for me. Good luck!

Chris"Toph4er"

#3 merrymom1013

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Posted 16 February 2009 - 08:20 PM

An update on SAT accomodations. We received word in late September that the accomodations were denied. The information they used to deny them was the IEP submitted by the school which did refer to the limitations caused by the medical issues & her need for extra time, breaks, etc. The denial included instructions for an appeal- it took me a number of weeks to get all of the needed documentation. Sleep study results, etc as well as a doctor letter written to address the points the College Board wanted covered. We submitted all of it in November & just now (Feb) heard that the accomodations are approved. My daughter (a junior) takes the SATs next month. For other high school students/parents, if you know you will need accomodations, my advice is to start the process early. Freshman year is not too soon (especially if you are doing the PSAT in 10th grade). Definitely by spring of 10th grade if possible. Once you are approved the accomodations are for PSAT, SAT, SATII- not just for one date.

#4 chimbakka

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Posted 18 February 2009 - 09:02 AM

i wasn't diagnosed until after college but i would like to share with you somet hings that got me though and helped me be successful:

first i analysed my school and study habits. i found that i get distracted easily. this makes my study time inefficient and makes me late.
so... i decided to write EVERYTHING in a planner. at school Xoclock, class at ___ break at ___ back at class___ then i also kept a page "to do" list with EVERYTHING i needed done for school/work and personal "this due x day, this due___ test___ must catch up ____ car needs oil change, dishes, laundry on and on.... then i'd fit in my schedule example if i had an hour for lunch i'd take my book for a class and get one thing done on the list i knew would be about half hour. or go type something up and save it in that half hour, or study for that half hour IN the place i ate lunch or NEAR so i wouldn't get distracted... i study really well it's the time between destinations whre i lose time... ie GETTING to the car to get to work. GETTING to the library or getting my butt in a chair there and GETTING the book open... once i get somewhere i'm good to go. Well... then i get in deep and am late for the class after. I MUST WEAR A WATCH for all occasions... that goes with this first step.

second step. i realized that i study wella nd retain most if i do it in small bits. i would type out my ontes (usually if i had extra "breaks" with nothing planned i'd chip away at this as the weeks went but BFORE at test or exam) save the "good copy" of my notes, broken down into units, the topics etc.

Now... these i'd keep in my purse/pocket until the test. soo... if i was sitting on a bus, i knew i'd be distracted anyways because i can't sit still, i'd read a page over and over and THINK about what it meant, and this helped me commit it to memory (rather than reading a few chapters i'd read about one topic and THINK about it unti i got how it worked/what it meant). then next time i had a break (say i was done notes early in class, waiting for hte 15 min break but didn't have to pee etc) i'd read more... same at home, during commercials on tv, sitting in the kitchen waiting for dinner to cook, before bed, etc. before i knew it i knew most of what i needed to know without officiall sitting down to "study".
THEN one week (for a test - two for exam) before i'd take all the notes then go through them ALL at once (now that im familiar would not take long) and highlight any parts im not comfortable that i know them in and out. then when i study during breaks that week i focus on those. ever two -three days repeat looking at all notes. before you know it less and less is highlighted as a "problem area"
the night before the test i read the notes, feel pretty good that im comfortable with the material, which then allows me to sleep stress free (withouth that im up all night with insomnia) then i get up EARLY read the notes again, have a good meal, then nap (depending on the test time, if its am i get up and allow two hours of eating and getting ready time) then ir ead them once mroe fast over to give my self a confidence boost, then im good to go.
this made it much easier for me for recall during test time. it also forced me to work bit by bit and expanded my attention span. i also used a watch. if i didn't hav ethe answer in two "thoughts" on a test i'd circle it in pencil and move on. Once at the end THEN go back to the circles. see how much time is left and break it into number of circle questions, then if you are on one for longer than that move to the next and so on until the end. you will have MUCH less unanswered questions this way AND it prevents you from spending 20 min on a stupid question that is worth one mark but you can't get passed because you get distracted and don't realize it's been 20 min. usually i'd get them all done with 30 min or more, then i'd go back through and make sure i filled in the right thing on the scan tron. i only corrected mistakes in transcribing (ie i meant one answer but circled D) and ONLY ONLY ONLY CHANGED my mind IF I KNEW FOR DAMN SURE i made a dumb mistake. if i can't say 100% why it was wrong i leave it alone. any time i changed without the 100% rule i was wrong the first time.

i know that was long, but this allowed me to be very successful in school even though i was with N and not diagnosed yet. on weekend i would also keep my printed notes beside me and nap, wake up read till im tired, nap, wake upread... etc for some afternooons and it did a really great job of helping me retain info. forcing youself it "study for X amount of time" when you have N just isn't realistic. if you aren't focusing on what you are reading (i would read the same line over and over the thinkg what the heck id idn't even really "read" it or realize what it said) is just a waste of time. i do agree with a structured plan, but it has to be structured around a narcoleptic body. the way i mentioned is the best way i foudn to do that. if you are unable to get her extra time etc i hope that you do find a way to help her get the most from the time she does have. it can be done, it's just a matter of programming your body to that habit, in which you work with your N instead of fight it.
good luck!!!

#5 merrymom1013

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Posted 19 February 2009 - 08:58 PM

Thanks chimbakka I will share these tips with my daughter (she doesn't visit the message boards). She is beginning to work this stuff out - I see her making lots of lists & reminders, though she prefers a blackberry. She carries books & schoolwork around to use the time she has. It's definitely a learning curve- you must be smart determined & a bit lucky to have figured out a good system pre diagnosis & treatment!