ACCA is committed to ensuring that no student is disadvantaged in their examinations because of any special educational need, disability or temporary injury. In order to ensure this we make special access arrangements to enable all students to access our exams.
Requests for access arrangements will be considered in accordance with the UK Equality Act 2010. This requires reasonable adjustments to be made where a disabled person or a person who has suffered accidental injury or acute illness (whether short or long term) would be at a substantial disadvantage in taking an examination compared to someone who is not disabled.
An example of a reasonable adjustment would be a Braille exam which would be a reasonable adjustment for a vision impaired candidate who could read Braille. An adjustment may not be considered reasonable if it involves unreasonable costs, timeframes or affects the security or integrity of the examination. In most cases it will not be reasonable for adjustments to be made to assessment criteria within an exam (the learning outcomes we wish to assess) as to do so would undermine its integrity and effectiveness in providing a reliable indication of the knowledge, skills and understanding of the student. An example of an adjustment that may be considered unreasonable, would be the provision of a paper based exam in place of a computer-based exam where students are required to demonstrate skills in the use of technology. To make this provision would mean changing the assessment criteria for the exam and would, therefore, undermine its integrity. Further information on ACCA’s transition to computer-based exams can be found in How ACCA exams have evolved over time (PDF, 97kb).
In line with the Act, disability includes people who have:
To help all students demonstrate their competence in the areas being assessed in our examinations, each request will be considered on an individual basis by our experienced team. ACCA also works with a number of external agencies to ensure our awareness and assessment capability is both relevant and up to date, allowing us to make adjustments that are both appropriate and work in the best interests of our students.
Further information about which access arrangements are typically offered to different groups of individuals can be found in our access arrangements register. This register also outlines what evidence is required to support an application.
Requests should be submitted, along with the required supporting documentary medical evidence via the additional support portal on MyACCA.
Access arrangement requests must generally be submitted to ACCA by the standard entry closing date although there are some instances where a request is needed earlier. You should refer to the access arrangements register for details of any specific conditions. Requests received after this date may not be able to be processed in time for you to sit your examinations at that session. Requests relating to unforeseen accidental injury or acute illness should be submitted as soon as possible.
If you advised us of any specific needs during your initial registration we should already have a record of your requirements.
Outlined below are the types of additional support which may be appropriate for specific groups of individuals along with any specific exam conditions which may apply. They are examples for illustrative purposes only and not intended to be exhaustive.
The following addiitonal support may be appropriate for students falling into the following categories of need:
(eg general and/or specific learning difficulties (such as dyscalculia and dyslexia).
Candidates with learning difficulties may require, for example:
(eg Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Speech, Language and Communication Needs (SLCN))
Candidates with communication and interaction difficulties may require, for example:
(eg Hearing Impairment (HI), Multi-Sensory Impairment (MSI), Physical Disability (PD), Vision Impairment (VI))
Candidates with sensory and physical needs may require, for example:
(eg Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD), Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Mental Health Conditions)
Candidates with social, mental and emotional needs may require, for example:
Students should note that the following types of evidence are required to support any application for additional support:
A reasonable adjustment is an adjustment that can be made at reasonable cost or within a reasonable timeframe that will enable a student access to the content of an exam, without compromising the security or integrity of the exam. For example, a Braille exam would be a reasonable adjustment for a vision impaired candidate who could read Braille.
An adjustment may be considered unreasonable if it involves unreasonable costs, timeframes or affects the security or integrity of the examination. In most cases it will not be reasonable for adjustments to be made to assessment criteria within an exam (the learning outcomes we wish to assess) as to do so would undermine its integrity and effectiveness in providing a reliable indication of the knowledge, skills and understanding of the student. An example of an adjustment which may be considered unreasonable would be the provision of a paper based exam in place of an exam which is computer-based as a result of a requirement for students to demonstrate skills in the use of technology. To make this provision would mean changing the assessment criteria within the exam and would, therefore, undermine its integrity.
Most Applied Skills and Strategic Professional exams include assessment criteria (or Learning Outcomes we wish to assess) which relate to the use of technology within the exam and which, therefore, can only reasonably be assessed via computer. Offering an alternative form of assessment via a paper exam would mean changing these assessment criteria. This would compromise the integrity of the exam as the student would not be able to demonstrate that they had met the requirements of the exam and achieved the desired Learning Outcomes.