Candidate Regulations – Reasonable adjustments, assessors

Candidate Regulations

Candidate Regulations index

Before the exam

Reasonable adjustments

Candidates, or centres entering candidates, who require reasonable adjustments must inform CIOL Qualifications at the time of registration, specifying in detail what provision is requested. All such applications must be accompanied by:

  • supporting evidence, such as a copy of a medical or professional statement, or a psychologist’s report, which includes recommendations
  • a statement from the candidate’s examination centre (apart from the IoLET Open Centre) agreeing to the provision of a reasonable adjustments

CIOL Qualifications' policy on examinations is to give all candidates equal opportunity to demonstrate attainment. CIOL Qualifications will provide candidates with disabilities, or other needs, the same access to examinations as other candidates where this does not invalidate the assessment objective of the examination. CIOL Qualifications is committed to implementing current legislation in this area and its policies are reviewed regularly. Candidates should note that any additional costs will have to be met either by the candidate or in some cases by prior arrangement made with the examination centre. Reasonable Adjustments are considered on a case by case basis before authorising the adjustment/s requested.

The principles of the policy are:

  • reasonable adjustments are made in order to take into account the effect of a disability on (or other impediment to) a candidate’s performance
  • adjustments are determined according to the particular needs of the candidate
  • reasonable adjustments for a candidate do not give unfair advantage over other candidates

According to the specific needs of the candidate, adjustments may include:

  • extra time allowance (maximum 25%) or rest periods
  • use of a reader
  • use of a writer
  • use of a separate invigilated room
  • use of specialist equipment e.g. a computer
  • large print, Braille or Moon version of examination papers
  • use of the home as an Examination Centre

Use of a reader/writer

A reader or writer will normally be appointed by CIOL Qualifications and remunerated by the candidate and is responsible to the examinations officer. The use of a reader should not give a candidate an unfair advantage nor should it further hinder the candidate. Additional time will be allowed for the use of a reader or writer (maximum 25% extra). A reader will read to the candidate the entire or any part of the examination paper and/or any part of the candidate’s answers. The reader or writer should be a responsible adult who has a working knowledge of the language being tested. S/he must not be the candidate’s own teacher. On no account should a relative of the candidate be used.

Candidates using the services of a reader/writer should be accommodated separately to avoid disturbing other candidates and to avoid other candidates hearing what is being read/dictated. The whole examination must be recorded by the invigilator when a reader or writer is used. Any irregularities in the use of a reader or writer could result in the candidate being disqualified.

During the assessment

The reader should:

  • read accurately and read only the instructions and questions
  • only repeat the instructions and questions when asked to do so
  • not give factual help to the candidate nor offer suggestions
  • not advise the candidate regarding which questions to attempt, when to  move on to the next  questions, nor the order in which the questions should  be completed
  • give information, if asked, on time elapsed and remaining
  • refer any problems immediately to the invigilator

The writer should:

  • not give factual help to the candidate nor offer suggestions
  • not advise the candidate regarding which questions to attempt, when to move on to the next questions, nor the order in which the questions should  be completed
  • write down answers exactly as they are dictated
  • write in corrections on the script if requested to do so by the candidate
  • refer any problems immediately to the invigilator

Assessors (interlocutor, oral examiner, proof reader, setter, tape sampler, written marker)

Examination teams are allocated to examination centres by the examination consultant responsible for the area in which they are located. Neither an examination centre nor candidate can be involved in the appointment of an examination team. CIOL Qualifications assessors are recruited against set criteria and trained for the specific purposes of the examination. CIOL Qualifications expects candidates to be able to cope with regional accents or variations in a language demonstrated by assessors.

If, during the course of an oral examination, the assessor and the candidate discover that they are known to each other, the assessor will have been trained to follow certain procedures to ensure that the candidate is not disadvantaged.

Under no circumstances are candidates permitted to contact CIOL Qualifications assessors before or after the examination in an attempt to discuss and/or obtain feedback on their performance. If this occurs, all assessors are instructed to submit a written report to the Head of Qualifications detailing any such contact. All reports of this nature will be investigated fully and appropriate action will be taken. Candidates are advised that any such investigation may result in disqualification.