Information on Accommodations and Supports for ACCESS for ELLs is available on the WIDA website. These materials will also be included in the test administration materials sent to schools.
Alternate ACCESS for ELLs
Alternate ACCESS for ELLs is designed for ELs with significant cognitive disabilities. By definition, these are ELs who receive instruction aligned to the state’s Alternate Achievement Standards, the Essential Elements, and take or will take the DLM assessment. A student is administered either the ACCESS for ELLs or the Alternate ACCESS for ELLs, not both.
The Alternate ACCESS for ELLs is an assessment of English language proficiency in the four language domains of reading, writing, speaking, and listening for students in grades 1 – 12, that can be administered by licensed educators with either ESL or special education certifications. Based on the Alternate Model Performance Indicators (AMPIs), the Alternate ACCESS for ELLs measures social and instructional language, and aligns with the WIDA Alternate English Language Proficiency levels.
Choosing Appropriate Accommodations
Request for Domain Exemption
ACCESS for ELLs and Alternate ACCESS for ELLs allow a large variety of supports and accommodations to help ELs equitably access the tests. However, in rare cases ELs with certain disabilities may be unable to access one or more domains, even with accommodations. When an EL is precluded from accessing a domain due to a disability, districts may request an exemption from that domain. If the exemption is approved, DPI will generate an Overall Composite Score for the student which accounts for the missing domain score(s).
The decision to request a domain exemption must be made by the student’s IEP/504 team, and be documented on the I-7 ACCESS for ELLs/Alt-ACCESS for ELLs form. Please see the Guide to Special Education Forms for additional information.
To request a domain exemption from DPI, please complete the Request to Waive Domain form.
DPI will assess the request, and respond within one week. Requests should be made at least one week prior to the administration of the assessment to ensure that appropriate steps are completed in a timely fashion.
Online Test Management
If the Reading or Listening domain is to be waived, the impacted domain will need to be force-closed using the End Incomplete Test function in the WIDA AMS in the Manage Students Section. After both domains are completed, a request to DRC will need to be made by DPI to manually set the Speaking and Writing Tier. If requesting a waiver for either of these domains, please determine whether the student should be given Tier A or Tier B/C.
Choosing the Correct Test
The flowchart below will help you determine which test is most appropriate for a student.