It is the responsibility of a student’s family to provide all equipment, materials, and personnel necessary to support a student’s approved accommodations on test day for all computer-based AND paper-based SSAT administrations.
This policy is focused on minimizing stress for the student on test day, and giving them the ability to work with individuals and equipment with which they are comfortable and familiar.
If you have any concerns about your family’s ability to provide anything needed for your student to successfully complete testing, please contact EMA immediately, and well in advance of your scheduled test date, at email@example.com.
Learn about our three safe and convenient ways to take the SSAT.
Beginning in mid-July, SSAT at Home signup will be available through the test registration process. When a parent or guardian logs into their account, they will be able to register for the SSAT at Home, then they will be directed to schedule their student's test date. Detailed information and guidelines will be provided when SSAT at Home registration opens.
Families who have already registered for a 2020 test date but have yet to take the exam due to COVID-19 cancellations will receive priority SSAT at Home scheduling. More spaces will be opening soon.
The SSAT at Home is currently only available in U.S. and Canada for Middle and Upper Level Students.
Any student choosing to sit for a paper-based FLEX SSAT will encounter a more traditional testing experience on test day. For any paper-based SSAT, all accommodations must be approved prior to scheduling testing with an authorized educational consultant or member school in your area. Families will be responsible for providing all equipment, materials, and personnel for their student’s accommodated testing needs aside from any physical test materials that may be required.
Due to the ongoing presence of COVID-19 and the state-by-state guidelines regarding social distancing and the like, the availability of paper-based testing during the 2020-2021 testing season will be extremely limited and dependent upon resources available in a given locale to do so. FLEX testing will only be offered at the discretion of the administrator and cannot be guaranteed as an option for every test taker. It is important to also remember that any FLEX test does come at an additional cost to the family as you will not only pay EMA for the cost of registration, but also pay the educational consultant or administrator for their time in proctoring the SSAT for your student.
To kick start 2020, EMA teamed with Prometric to offer the very first computer-based version of the SSAT. Initially this computer-based SSAT option was only available in designated locations and only for the Upper Level SSAT (Grades 8-11); however, beginning with the 2020-2021 testing season, Prometric will now have expanded offerings for the SSAT throughout the US and Canada, for both the Middle Level and Upper Level SSATs. Elementary Level testing for grades 3 and 4 will only be offered as a paper-based FLEX test option for the 2020-2021 testing season.
As is the same for all test mode options, any student wishing to take a computer-based SSAT at a Prometric testing center with accommodations is required to apply and be approved for their needed accommodations prior to registering for testing. With some SSAT accommodations being unnecessary when taking the computer-based test versus a traditional paper-based test, it is recommended that any student seeking accommodations for a computer-based test, apply for accommodations with the possibility of taking a paper-based test in mind. By doing so, you will ensure that your student is approved for any and all accommodations that may become necessary for any mode of testing. For a better understanding of the differences of how each accommodation will be provided on test day for each mode of testing, please view our “common” accommodation descriptors in the appendix below. If you have questions or concerns about any particular accommodations or a mode of testing, please do not hesitate to email EMA at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The newest testing option being offered by EMA is the computer-based at-home SSAT where you guessed it, students will have the ability to complete the SSAT in the comforts of their own home. As more became known about the COVID-19 outbreak, the need for socially distant testing became obvious, EMA knew it would need to be flexible in its problem solving. The At-Home SSAT option will ensure that all students wanting to take the SSAT for admissions purposes will have the same opportunity as the cohorts of students from years passed without having to risk their own health and safety to do so.
As is the same for all test mode options, any student wishing to take a computer-based SSAT At-Home with accommodations is required to apply and be approved for their needed accommodations prior to registering for testing. With some SSAT accommodations being unnecessary when taking the computer-based test versus a traditional paper-based test, it is recommended that any student seeking accommodations for a computer-based test, apply for accommodations with the possibility of taking a paper-based test in mind. By doing so, you will ensure that your student is approved for any and all accommodations that may become necessary for any mode of testing. For a better understanding of the differences of how each accommodation will be provided on test day for each mode of testing, please view our “common” accommodation descriptors in the appendix below. If you have questions or concerns about any particular accommodations or a mode of testing, please do not hesitate to email EMA at email@example.com.
During the SSAT at Home, students may not wear a mask during testing unless they have been approved for accommodations that include a support individual. Support staff includes a reader, scribe, sign language interpreter or other required support individual. For students that have been approved for a support individual, both the student and the support staff are permitted to wear a mask throughout testing. During testing, the student and proctor will need to temporarily remove their mask so they can be visible to the camera at the start of testing and following each break. For students with approved support individuals, both the student and support individual may also possess and use sanitizing wipes and gloves and be allowed to socially distance.
Since Flex administrations are managed by an EMA Member School or Consultant, registration for Flex tests with approved accommodations may be completed until the day of the test. However, it is important to note that the availability of FLEX testing is dependent upon the administrator’s ability to provide any approved accommodations and also allows enough time between registration between registration and test day to ensure EMA is able to provide any special materials, as needed, to the appropriate test center (i.e. large print test materials, braille materials, etc.).
For some accommodated testing needs, it may be required of you to contact the Prometric Test Center where your student is registered to schedule testing to ensure that the test center staff is aware of all testing needs and are able to allot enough time for testing on test day.
As a result, it may not be possible to modify an existing registration to add or remove any accommodations after any test is scheduled.
Students only need to be approved for testing accommodations ONCE per testing year.
All approved applications for testing accommodations will EXPIRE at the end of the testing season on July 31.
Any student with an identified disabling condition or impairment which substantially limits her or his ability to perform a major life activity. Major life activities include, but are not limited to: seeing, hearing, speaking, reading, concentrating, thinking, communicating, and learning.
If you are unsure of your student’s educational testing needs, EMA recommends contacting professionals from your student’s current school to discuss appropriate testing accommodations.
Additionally, it may also be beneficial to contact any medical professionals involved in your student’s care or treatment.
Lastly, you may choose to contact EMA directly at firstname.lastname@example.org for consultation regarding the appropriateness of particular testing accommodations for your student.
1. Log in to your student’s account, click the “SSAT Testing” button and then the “Apply for / View My Accommodations” tab.
2. Next, click the “Click to Apply for Testing Accommodations” button to be taken to the online application. There you will indicate your student’s disability, select the needed accommodations, and other related information.
3. Provide contact information for an approver who is able to attest that:
Based on the information provided within your student’s application for testing accommodations, the form will indicate whether or not you are required to provide us with documentation to substantiate your student’s request for testing accommodations.
Then, your approver submits their online approval and approver ID forms. After submitting your request, your approver receives an email with a link to complete a secure online approval form. This will allow your student’s approver to:
1. Confirm/deny each requested accommodation.
2. Confirm that documentation meeting our requirements is on file.
If applicable, EMA will review the information provided by your approver and the documentation you submitted. After a final decision is made, you will be notified that either:
(*If no documentation was required, you will skip this step.)
It is important to understand that there are separate timelines and deadlines for:
A. Having your student’s accommodations approved (must be done first!), and
B. Registering for the SSAT
Depending on your student’s accommodation request, you may or may not be required to submit documentation which can greatly impact an application’s timeline for approval.
Documentation supporting your student’s need for testing accommodations must always be on file with your indicated approver.
Please contact us if you have other forms of documentation considered..
Your student’s request may not require documentation submission. Check below to see if your request qualifies for Direct Access
EMA has a firm commitment to facilitate the approval of all testing accommodations for students with disabilities without undue delay. In many cases, Direct Access allows us to approve your student’s request without needing to submit formal documentation. Please remember that valid documentation must always exist on file with your indicated approver and we reserve the right to request this documentation for review.
If your student’s request meets ALL THREE of the following criteria, you do NOT need to submit documentation when applying for testing accommodations:
A. Your student’s indicated approver is a representative from her/his school
B. The documentation your approver has on file is one of the following:
C. All requested testing accommodations are associated with your student’s disabilities (see association tables below)
*Important: During the application process, if your student’s disability or requested accommodations are listed as “other” they will be automatically deemed INELIGIBLE for Direct Access. This is because requests containing testing accommodations for low-incidence disabilities require more time for review and planning for the provision of testing accommodations.
It will depend upon your approver. If your student’s request qualifies for Direct Access, the approval time depends upon how quickly your student’s indicated approver completes the online approval form and submits the required approver identification form. Most often, this portion of the approval process will take at least a few business days.
EMA sends reminder emails to approvers who have not completed online approval or submitted approver ID within a specified period of time.
To utilize Direct Access, use these tables to see if your requested accommodations are associated with your student’s disability. See examples below charts.
Student A: Student A is diagnosed with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and requests 50% additional time and testing in a small group setting of ten (10) or fewer students. Since both of these accommodations are associated with ADD/ADHD in the table above, all of the accommodations are associated and may be eligible for approval through Direct Access if all other EMA requirements are met.
Student B: Student B is diagnosed as visually impaired and a medical or chronic health condition (for the purposes of this exercise, Student B is diagnosed with diabetes). Student B requests large print test materials and permission for access to and use of their diabetic supplies. Since all of these accommodations are associated with either the visual impairment or the medical or chronic health conditions tables outlined above, all the accommodations are considered to be associated with the student’s disabilities.
Student C: Student C is diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and submits a request for access to large print test materials and the use of a hearing aid/device. Since neither of these accommodations are associated with a diagnosis of ASD in the second table on page 10, this request for testing accommodations would require documentation to be submitted and reviewed before the student may be approved or able to register for testing with the requested accommodations.
An approver is a qualified individual who can affirm that valid documentation meeting our requirements is on file with their school or organization, and that the student is known to have a disability requiring testing accommodations.
If your student’s approver is unresponsive to your student’s request for testing accommodations, even after multiple contact attempts, you may choose to select a different approver to serve in this role for your student.
If you wish to change the approver associated with your student’s application for accommodations, you may do so within your student’s online SSAT account by returning to the pending application for accommodations and clicking the “Change Approver” button. You will be asked to provide all contact information for the new approver before submitting.
If your student’s request for testing accommodations is denied by their designated approver, you may choose to:
In the event your student’s requested accommodations are approved, but EMA determines that the supporting documentation provided does not substantiate the requested testing accommodations and/or meet our requirements, we will notify you of the decision and provide a rationale, including:
The information below explains the responsibilities and requirements for an individual who will affirm that a student requires accommodation when taking the SSAT. If a student has or will list you as their approver of accommodations, this information is for you!
The Enrollment Management Association (EMA) is a nonprofit organization that supports the admission assessment and enrollment management needs of schools, students, and families.
EMA administers the Secondary School Admission Test (SSAT) to more than 70,000 students annually in support of admission to EMA member schools.
EMA provides accommodations to students with disabilities. The specific accommodation(s) provided for students with disabilities are based upon each student’s needs.
Any professional approving accommodations for a student must be a non-family member, regardless of credentials possessed by a family member. Identified professionals must be able/willing to affirm that:
Documentation supporting a student’s need for testing accommodations must always be on file with your school or organization.
Please contact us if you have other forms of documentation considered.
While IEP and 504 documents tend to be relatively structured in their format and include all necessary elements to meet SSAT documentation requirements, private school documentation may not be as consistent. Generally, private school documentation is considered to be formal documentation created by the school which outlines diagnostic impressions, as well as educational needs and services provided in the school setting for a given student. Provided below is a sample document which fulfills EMA requirements.
Private school documentation—on letterhead
Once you have been designated as an approver by a student, a few simple steps complete the process.
This code will be emailed and after entering the code, the form will be unlocked for completion.
If you don’t have a business card, you can provide a brief statement on your company’s letterhead indicating your name, address, job title, responsibility for maintaining accommodation documentation, and that you are submitting the letter as verification of your identity for SSAT testing accommodations.
You can also follow the instructions on the form to mail or fax; however, we highly recommend sending as quickly as possible.
If no other documentation needs to be submitted by the student, they will be alerted that they are approved and able to register with accommodations. Otherwise, if documentation is required, EMA will await its submission by the student for further review.
This means that you will only need to submit ID once, regardless of the number of students you approve. Your status as a known approver continues through three testing seasons. In other words, if you become a known approver in the 2020-2021 testing season (August 1, 2020-July 31, 2021) you will not need to submit your ID again until August 1, 2023. When accessing future online approval forms as a known approver, the form recognizes your email address and will not require submission of identification for approval validation.
If you have a question or concern, contact email@example.com right away! We are here to work with you to facilitate the approval of all necessary and reasonable accommodations for testing.
After your student’s accommodations are approved, have a conversation with him or her about what to expect on test day and what testing accommodations will be permitted. This will go a long way toward decreasing test day stress and enabling the best performance.
To avoid unnecessary delays, please touch base with your approver after submitting any application for accommodations to confirm receipt of our automated request for approval email.
To be eligible for Direct Access and NOT be required to submit documentation, your student’s approver MUST be a representative at your student’s school.
Sometimes emails sent to approvers get stuck in their spam filters. If your approver seems delayed in responding to your request, call them to make sure they received the necessary approver email.
Please be sure to provide the BEST parent/guardian email address when creating your student’s SSAT account so we can easily contact you with any questions or issues related to your student’s account.
To remain eligible for Direct Access, select from the existing categories whenever possible.
If you are required to submit documentation to substantiate your student’s need for accommodations, remember that submitting a full copy of an IEP, 504 plan, or other documentation provides EMA the most complete information and best supports a student application.
Any student utilizing any type of non-approved accommodation(s) on test day will be cited for an irregularity. Irregular tests are considered invalid and will NOT be scored. Additionally, no refunds are provided for any test cited as an irregularity.
If you or your student has a physical disability and you need to confirm physical access to the testing location (ramps, elevators, accessible parking, etc.), you do not need to request testing accommodations (i.e. use of a wheelchair, use of elevator, etc.). Instead, please email firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can ensure your access to the testing location.
If your student has been diagnosed with a temporary condition, such as a broken arm, broken hand, or concussion, and you have concerns regarding your student’s ability to complete testing, please email email@example.com before requesting accommodations or registering for a test.
In general, it is our recommendation that students who experience an unexpected accident resulting in temporary impairment postpone testing until after they are fully recovered to ensure test performance is an accurate reflection of their true abilities.
If your student is considered to be limited English proficient or an English Language Learner, they are not eligible to receive testing accommodations when completing the SSAT as such accommodations are strictly prohibited for any student that does not require them as the result of a significant disability or impairment.
If you did not request a particular accommodation with your student’s original application and you would like to have additional accommodations considered/approved, please email firstname.lastname@example.org for assistance.
It may be possible for additional testing accommodations to be added/approved for your student without the need to submit an additional application or documentation; however, in some cases this is necessary. Depending upon factors specific to the situation, including the test date, your student’s needs, and the additional accommodations requested, it may be necessary to reschedule testing. Please contact us as soon as possible.
The At-Home version of the SSAT will require the test taker to provide proof of identity prior to testing and the test taker will also be recorded throughout testing. Recordings will be kept for up to one year for review, as needed. If you object to the photo/video requirements as set forth by EMA due to any religious beliefs or affiliations, please compose a letter citing such concerns and email the letter as an attachment to EMA at email@example.com. An EMA staff member will be in touch to discuss the matter and explore test options in your area.
EMA recognizes the uniqueness and individuality of each student’s disability and accommodation needs. All requests for “other” testing accommodations will be considered and reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
We may require additional time to work with testing locations to provide uncommon or “other” testing accommodations. EMA will work diligently to provide all such accommodations; however, certain requests may cause delays in testing so that we may procure the necessary facilities and staffing to meet your student’s testing needs.
On rare occasions, there may be testing accommodations requested which are deemed unreasonable and cannot be provided. It is important to note that we cannot (and are not required by law to) provide any testing accommodation that will:
a. jeopardize test security,
b. fundamentally alter the SSAT, or
c. cause an undue burden to EMA.
In some cases, it may be necessary for EMA to work with the family to provide an equally effective testing accommodation in lieu of a requested accommodation. Recommendations for the use of an alternate testing accommodation will be made only when required to ensure the integrity and security of the SSAT are not compromised and when determined to be equally effective in meeting the student’s educational testing needs.
Example A: If your student has been diagnosed with a chronic health condition such as cerebral palsy, Crohn’s Disease, diabetes, or any other chronic health condition, select the “Medical or Chronic Health Conditions” option rather than typing the specified disability into the “other” form field.
Example B: If your student has been diagnosed with an educational disability such as dysgraphia, dyslexia, dyscalculia, etc., please select the “Learning Disabilities option rather than typing the specified medical terminology (dyslexia, etc.) into the “other” form field.
Example C: If your student has been diagnosed with a mental health condition such as anxiety (generalized or specified), depression, bipolar disorder, or any other mental health condition(s), please select the “Psychiatric Disorders” option rather than typing the specific mental condition into the “other” form field.
This list does not reflect all accommodations available for the SSAT. If your student requires an accommodation not listed in this appendix or requires a variation of an accommodation outlined herein, it must be entered as an “other” accommodation when completing the online application.
*Additional breaks between sections 1 & 2 and sections 3 & 4 of the SSAT will be provided ONLY to those students approved for any amount of additional time as a testing accommodation when completing a paper-based SSAT. Due to test programming differences between the computer-based and paper-based tests, students testing with 50% additional time at a Prometric test center will only receive breaks following the writing sample and Reading sections. Please review the computer-based testing schedule above for exact break timings.
**Due to time constraints, students completing the paper-based SSAT with additional time are NOT required to complete the experimental portion of the SSAT; however, any student completing the computer-based version of the SSAT will be required to complete this section due to test design.
***Test timings reflected in computer-based column are same for all SSAT At-Home and Prometric SSAT testing options.
This timing information is applicable for those students taking the Middle (grades 5-7) or Upper (grades 8-11) Level SSAT. Please contact EMA if you would like more information regarding the additional time accommodation as it pertains to the Elementary Level (3rd and 4th grade) SSAT.
Example of Acceptable Calculator for SSAT
*Example of Acceptable SSAT Electronic Spell Checking Device
Nondisclosure Agreement: Individuals planning to serve as a student’s reader on test day will be required to sign a non-disclosure agreement (NDA) prior to the start of testing. The NDA is a legal agreement indicating that the adult assistant will not disclose or disseminate any exposed SSAT test content.