Schreuer, N., & Sachs, D. (2014). Efficacy of accommodations for students with disabilities in higher education . Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation , 40 (1), 27–40.

Journal Article

Schreuer, N., & Sachs, D. (2014). Efficacy of accommodations for students with disabilities in higher education. Journal of Vocational Rehabilitation, 40(1), 27–40.


Dictated response; Dictated response (scribe); Emotional/Behavioral disability; Enlarged print (on paper); Extended time; Hearing impairment (including deafness); International (non-U.S.); Multiple accommodations; Multiple disabilities; Oral delivery; Oral delivery, live/in-person; Physical disability; Postsecondary; Visual impairment (including blindness)




This study examined various accommodations—including physical, human, and academic accommodations—and among academic accommodations, both examination-based and non-examination-based accommodations. Emphasis was given to details about assessment accommodations in this summary. Examination-based accommodations were extended time and presentation formats—large print, in-person read aloud, and orally-based in both question and response.


Postsecondary students with disabilities were recruited from across six universities and 22 colleges throughout Israel, and the resulting sample numbered 170 students. These self-identified disabilities included 65 students with sensory disabilities (hearing impairments and visual impairments), 61 students with physical disabilities (Cerebral Palsy, musculoskeletal disorders, neuromuscular impairments, or spinal cord injuries), 39 students with psychiatric disabilities, and 5 students with multiple disabilities; students with learning disabilities and/or intellectual disabilities were not included in this study. Other demographic details were reported for the participants, including gender, marital status, employment status, religion, parents' education, and place of birth.

Dependent Variable

The student surveys included the Physical, Human and Academic Accommodation Services (PHAAS) scale, which inquired both about students' use of and appraisal of the usefulness of various accommodations, including examination-related accommodations. Another survey employed was the College Student Experiences Questionnaire (CSEQ), which inquired about participation in 103 activities, respondents' satisfaction with participating, and respondents' perceptions of the educational institution. Finally, student participants were asked about demographics, grade point averages, and the number of courses taken per year, and disability-related questions such as diagnoses, age at onset of disability, and degree of independence.


Usage rates for examination-related accommodations included about 71 percent for extended time, with 62 percent reporting benefiting from it, about 42 percent for alternative exam formats, with 41 percent benefiting. When examining the academic accommodation subscale as a whole with participation and participation satisfaction, the researchers found that there was a low degree of correlation; all other accommodation subscales (human, physical, and organizational) correlated to a greater degree with these participation measures. Limitations of the study were reported, and future research directions were suggested.