Exam Sign-Up Deadline

For all timed assessments, students must sign up a minimum of 14 days prior to the exam date.  

ClockWork information sessions for students

Student Accessibility and Achievement will hold two virtual training sessions for registered students to learn more about ClockWork, our new online platform.

These one (1) hour trainings will be held on ZOOM and are intended for students who are registered with SAA. We will go over the basics of how to use Clockwork, including: how to review and confirm academic accommodations, booking appointments, signing up for exam accommodations and more!

Sign up for one of the trainings using the links below:

Frequently asked questions from faculty

Student Accessibility and Achievement was formerly known as the Office for Students with Disabilities (OSD) and Tutorial Services.

Our new, more inclusive name better reflects the nature of our services and supports. Any correspondence or forms you may have received from the OSD or Tutorial Services in the past, will now come from Student Accessibility and Achievement. Some of our contact information has changed as well. Before emailing us, please verify if you have our updated contact information.

1. How do students register with Student Accessibility and Achievement?

For students to register with Student Accessibility and Achievement for academic accommodations, they need to make a registration appointment to meet with an Access Services Advisor, discuss their barriers, and provide valid documentation from a licensed medical professional. Depending on the nature of their disability or health condition, this registration may be permanent or temporary. 

2. Can I find out if a student is registered with Student Accessibility and Achievement?

Instructors will find out if a student is registered with Student Accessibility and Achievement if a student chooses to disclose this to them. They may disclose this in conversation, by email, through an instructor notification letter, or through an exam request. Students are encouraged to disclose their barriers and not their diagnosis. Instructors will also be notified when a student writes their exams or midterms with the Student Accessibility and Achievement exam centre.

3. How do I get advice regarding a student I'm concerned about?

Instructors are welcome to contact advisors at Student Accessibility and Achievement to discuss general concerns they may have and learn more about our supports and processes for accommodations. Please note that due to confidentiality reasons, we cannot disclose a student’s registration with our office nor their approved accommodations.

The Office of the Dean of Students has also established protocols and resources for supporting students in difficulty or distress.

    4. Can I refer a student to Student Accessibility and Achievement?

    Instructors can recommend that students book an appointment with our offices if they notice that the student is experiencing barriers that may be disability related. They can also contact an advisor to learn more about our services or discuss a complex situation. 

    5. What are Student Accessibility and Achievement's opening hours?

    Student Accessibility and Achievement's main office is open Monday – Friday, 9:00 am – 5:00 pm. Our exam center is open for exam writing from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Check out our Contact Us page for more information on how to book an appointment.

    6. How do I contact the Student Accessibility and Achievement exam office?

    The exam coordinators can be reached by emailing access.exams [at] mcgill.ca or calling 514-398-8284

    7. What do I need to do when a student in my class needs a note-taker?

    Note-takers are recruited by Student Accessibility and Achievement. A student in the class will volunteer to take notes and will then upload a copy of their notes using myCourses.  If no note-taker is available in your course, you will receive an automated email asking you to send a call-out to your class informing them that a student has requested notes and encouraging them to sign up as a note provider.  

    We encourage instructors to create a note-taking community within their courses of students sharing their course notes in a myCourses forum. This makes course materials accessible to all students and can also be a way for instructors to assess participation. 

    8. I have received a Reasonable Consideration Notification from Student Accessibility and Achievement. What should I do now?

    Reasonable Consideration Notifications from Student Accessibility and Achievement communicate aspects of a student’s accommodation plan that require your knowledge and collaboration. The notification will confirm that the student has registered with Student Accessibility and Achievement and that we have valid medical documentation on file.

    The Reasonable Consideration Notification will also indicate 1 of the 5 following messages based on the student’s needs and approved supports:

    • the student may be absent from courses throughout the semester for valid disability-related reasons;
    • the student may approach you to negotiate deadline extensions;
    • the student requires advanced access to course materials;
    • the student requires permission to record lectures;
    • the student requires the use of a laptop computer in class.

    If you receive this notification, we invite you to initiate a conversation with the student to discuss this support and to develop an agreement as to how it can be enacted in practice. To support you in evaluating these requests, we have developed Reasonable Consideration Agreement templates, which can be found below.

    Reasonable Consideration Templates:

    9. How do I make sure a student does not share materials I have provided them as part of an accommodation?

    In some instances, students may require access to course materials which you are not otherwise posted. If this is the case, you will receive a Reasonable Consideration Notification supporting this request from Student Accessibility and Achievement. To support you in evaluating these requests, we have developed Reasonable Consideration Agreement templates (see question #8). The relevant agreement form can be completed during your discussion with the student, either in person or virtually. We encourage you to include any expectations and/or limitations regarding provision of course materials as appropriate within this agreement. Both you and the student should keep a copy for your records.

    10. How are students provided with accommodations for in-person and online assessments?

    If one or more students in your course have registered for academic exam accommodations, you will receive an email notification 12 days prior to the scheduled test/exam date. If students sign up on multiple days or indicate the test/exam takes place at various times, you may receive more than one email.   

    This email will include directions for submitting information about your test/exam, as well as a copy of your test/exam. The email will also contain a list of any students (name and ID number) who have requested their academic exam accommodations for this test/exam. 

    Please complete the Exam Instruction module in ClockWork as soon as possible, and a minimum of 3 business days prior to your test/exam. If you have not submitted the instructions and a copy of your test/exam, you will receive reminder emails 7 and 4 days prior to the scheduled test/exam date.   

    The instructor is responsible for calculating and adjusting the exam parameters for each student. If you have any questions about programming student's extra time on myCourses, access.exams [at] mcgill.ca (subject: myCourses%20support%20with%20individual%20time-based%20accommodations) (reach out to our exam team). Please provide the course code as well as the issue that you are experiencing and we will do our best to assist you. 

    A calculator was created by Student Accessibility and Achievement to best guide Faculty & Staff when providing students with their approved exam accommodations in an online context. The calculator generates the exam time for students, according to their time-based accommodations. 

    For example, the student John Doe has T1/4 (time and a quarter or 25%) and SW (stopwatch) listed as their exam accommodations. In other words, the student is entitled to receive extra time towards their exam duration in the following way:


    Original duration

    Duration for John Doe

    Exam duration

    2 hours

    3 hours


    In the calculator tool, select the exam length (original duration), the type of time-based accommodation, as well as the student's specific extra time amount, as listed on the e-mail that you received from Student Accessibility and Achievement.

    Image of Calculator tool.

    Click on Calculate. The calculator generates the updated exam time for students, according to their time-based accommodations and the original duration of the exam.

    Image of results of calculator tool. It reads 3 hours 0 minutes.

    Adjust individual time-based accommodations in myCourses

    Full instructions on creating a timed quiz on myCourses are available in the McGill Knowledge Base. To adjust individual time-based accommodations, follow the instructions listed below.

    On the Restrictions tab of the quiz, click the radio button beside the following option "Allow selected users special access to this quiz".

    • "Special Access" allows you to set special access rights or restrictions for chosen users. All other users will be able to see the quiz and will be governed by the normal restrictions you have set up in the Restrictions tab for the quiz.
    • Click "Add Users to Special Access"

    Image reads: Special Access. Type of access Allow select users special access to quiz. Or . Allow only users with special access to see this quiz. Button below reads: Add Users to Special Access.

    Select the checkbox beside the name of each student ("User") you want to give special access to. Click "Add Special Access ."


    Image shows list of users, with one name 'Alvin Dumbledore' checked off and 'Add Special User' button below.

    On the "Special Access Properties" page, select the Date Availability and Timing options you want the selected student(s) to have.

    Screen shot reads: Special access properties, with times underneath the title.

    After setting up special access for a student, in the "Special Access" section of the Restrictions tab, you can see that the selected user been added to the list and their special access settings appear beside their name.

    Screenshot of 'Special Access' with 'Allow selected users special access to this quiz' selected and students name and start and end time and date below.

    Hover your mouse over the pencil icon that appears beside a student's name to modify the student's "Timing". Click on "Enforce a Time Limit." This is where you will input the student’s time limit, in accordance to their time-based accommodations.

    Screen capture or Timing section. Enforce a time limit is selected. Below time limit and grace period fields appear. Below options to select for what should happen after the grace period.

    Communicate directly with your students individually to confirm that you have programmed their extra time on the testing platform (i.e. myCourses).

    Below is an example that you might include in your confirmation e-mail to students:

    Dear student, this e-mail serves as a confirmation that your time-based accommodation has been programmed onto myCourses, which has been calculated as per your registration with Student Accessibility and Achievement and the original duration of the assessment. Please make sure to verify, before starting your assessment, that your extra time has been programmed correctly. If your extra time has not been programmed, please reach out to me directly to let me know.

    Prior to the exam, we ask that instructors communicate directly with students to confirm any modifications to their exam (format, start time, or duration) so that students are informed that their accommodations have been applied and can prepare accordingly.

    If the class has been given 48 hours or more to complete the assessment (i.e. if the students have the full 48 hours to open, complete, and submit their assessment): Time-based accommodations do not apply; students do not submit an exam sign-up form. The Student Accessibility and Achievement Exam Center may reach out to you directly should a student require exceptional consideration given their disability-related barriers.

    11. How do I submit a copy of my in-person exam to Student Accessibility and Achievement?

    Please upload your test/exam to ClockWork

    School of Continuing Studies: The exam administrators in the School of Continuing Studies will contact you to request a copy of your test/exam.  

    NOTE: If this is a Crowdmark exam, see the section on Crowdmark below.  

    Crowdmark exams: Teaching and Learning Services is collaborating with Student Accessibility and Achievement and will provide them with Crowdmark exam copies directly. Student Accessibility and Achievement requires exam copies a minimum of 3 business days in advance for administrative purposes, which allows their technicians to do any disability-related technical modifications (e.g. enlarged print, or other alternate format). Instructors will receive an e-mail reminder from TLS a week before their exam date. This means that instructors must have their exam ready in Crowdmark and have added tls [at] mcgill.ca as a facilitator a minimum of 4 days before the exam date, so that they can provide Student Accessibility and Achievement with the exam. Crowdmarked exams will be returned directly to TLS for grading after they are written at Student Accessibility and Achievement.  

    12. When do I need to submit a copy of my test/exam?

    Please provide a copy of your test/exam as soon as possible, and a minimum of three (3) business days prior to your test/exam. This timeline will allow our team to prepare to proctor the test/exam on your behalf, as well as complete any conversion that may be required for a particular student (e.g., enlarged font, text-to-speech). 

    We understand that in some cases, the test/exam will not be ready in time for this deadline. If you are unable to meet this deadline, please inform our exam team (access.exams [at] mcgill.ca) as to when a copy of the test/exam will be available.   

    If we do not receive a copy of the test/exam in a timely manner, we will not be able to proctor the test/exam on your behalf, and you will need to make alternate arrangements with any student(s) affected.   

    13. How do I get my in-person exam returned from Student Accessibility and Achievement?

    Instructors have two options for receiving the exam from Student Accessibility and Achievement: to have it delivered to your faculty’s main desk, or to come and pick it up at Student Accessibility and Achievement the following business day.

    Pick up: you can come to the front desk at our Exam Centre (3459 McTavish, RS-56), Monday to Friday, from 9:00 am - 5:00 pm, the business day following the date of the exam. When submitting information about your test/exam in the Exam Instructions Form, you will be asked to specify the name of the person authorized to pick up the exam. All persons picking up exams are required to show their McGill ID card.

    Delivery: Please note that our staff do deliveries 3 times a week and all deliveries are sent to your faculty's main office. We do not deliver to locations outside of the downtown campus (e.g. Mac campus or MUHC hospitals)

    14. Do I need to submit a copy of the Final Exam for my course?

    If your Final Exam is scheduled through Enrolment Services, you do not need to submit a copy of the exam to our office. Student Accessibility and Achievement will collaborate directly with the Central Exams office or Student Affairs Office (MacDonald campus) to retrieve a copy of your Final Exam.  

    If you have a departmental Final Exam (i.e., is not on the Final Exam schedule), you will need to upload your test/exam in ClockWork

    Regardless of whether your Final Exam is scheduled through Central Exams or is a departmental Final Exam, we request that you complete the Exam Instructions module. We understand that there will be some overlap with information that has been submitted to Central Exams. However, as we request some additional information from instructors to ensure appropriate provision of academic accommodations, we request that you complete our Exam Instruction form as well.   

    15. How do I find out about students' academic exam accommodations for a test/exam that is virtual or in-person with an online component (e.g. myCourses)?

    If your test/exam is scheduled to take place virtually OR is in-person with an online component, Student Accessibility and Achievement will send you an email containing details about students’ time-based accommodations approximately 10 days prior to the scheduled test/exam date.  

    This email will include students’ first names, last names, ID numbers, and any applicable exam accommodations (e.g., 33% additional time). We have an online calculator for instructors to use to help determine how much additional time needs to be programmed in the testing platform depending on the duration of your test/exam. 

    16.Will Student Accessibility and Achievement change the start time of my in-person exams?

    In order to proctor the exam, it may be necessary to adjust the student’s start time to fit within our exam operating hours. The Student Accessibility and Achievement Exam Center proctors exams starting no earlier than 8:15 am, and no later than 7:30 pm. These time adjustments are done on an individual basis, based on the student’s accommodations and the timing of the exam. Exam security is maintained through sequestering.

    Example: Your exam starts at 6:30 pm and is scheduled to run for 3 hours. A student writing with Student Accessibility and Achievement would have their exam scheduled to finish by 7:30 pm, and would remain sequestered at the Exam Center until 1 hour after the class’ start time (7:30 pm) in order to maintain exam security.

    17.Does Student Accessibility and Achievement have the authority to change the date of a student’s exam?

    The Exam Center does not have the authority to authorize that a student write their exam on an alternate date. In the event that a student misses an exam, or wishes to defer a midterm, they are advised to obtain permission from the faculty to write on an alternate date. This authorization email must be sent by the faculty to access.exams [at] mcgill.ca and include the authorized alternate date. The Student Accessibility and Achievement Exam Coordinators will then coordinate with the student to arrange a time.

    18. How can students reach me or my TA to ask questions when writing in-person with Student Accessibility and Achievement?

    If you are permitting students to ask questions during the exam, you may need to be available earlier than the scheduled exam time (see above section on changing your start time) We ask that if instructors are taking questions during the regular exam, that they submit a phone number on the Exam Instructions Form where they or their TA can be reached so that Student Accessibility and Achievement students can have the same access to getting questions answered. This number is not shared with students in your class but managed by our Exam Center staff. When students ask questions, they signal to an invigilator who lets the Exam Center staff know. Exam Center staff place the phone call, and once you have been reached, the student is brought to the phone to ask their question.

    19. How do I communicate a typo or change on my exam to Student Accessibility and Achievement?

    Please contact the exam coordinators as soon as possible by emailing access.exams [at] mcgill.ca or calling 514-398-6009.

    20. Why is Student Accessibility and Achievement requesting a digital version of my in-person exam?

    Due to disability-related barriers, some students require alternate formats for their exam. This may include enlarged text, Braille, or digitized versions of the exam questions. In some instances, student accommodations include the use of a computer to type their exam answers instead of writing by hand. These computers are provided by Student Accessibility and Achievement and exam security measures are enforced by the invigilators under the guidance of exam centre staff. This means that instead of a question booklet, a set of typed exam responses may be returned instead. 

    21. Can I accommodate a student on my own without Student Accessibility and Achievement?

    If you are willing to provide a student their academic accommodations during your exam then you are welcome to do so. We would encourage you, in this case, to have the student contact their Access Services Advisor to communicate their specific accommodations to you.

    22. What is the testing environment at Student Accessibility and Achievement like?

    We provide an environment that is similar to the class or final exam setting. Students are required to leave bags and coats at the back of the room, there is no talking allowed during the exam, and invigilators monitor students closely.

    23. I would like to use Respondus LockDown Browser in MyCourses for online assessments. How does this impact students receiving accommodations?

    Respondus LockDown Browser locks a student in a quiz on myCourses. Students cannot navigate away from the quiz and are unable to open a browser window or access files or software on their computer. For students with extra-time accommodations, this can be programmed as usual. However, if students require adaptive technology, the Lockdown Browser will inhibit them from accessing it.

    Please communicate to your students at least 14 days in advance if you are using a LockDown Browser. Students that require adaptive technology will require an exemption from the LockDown Browser and will need to complete the exam sign-up form to apply. We will communicate a list of students requiring adaptive technology to you prior to the date of your assessment.

    24. How do I provide an exemption from the Respondus LockDown Browser?

    To provide individual students exemptions from the LockDown Browser, there are 2 options:

    1) Manage exemptions using Respondus

    • Go to your course and then click on Quizzes.
    • Click the drop-down arrow next to the quiz you would like to give exemption to and then click Manage Exemptions.
    • Select the students you would like to give exemptions for and then click "Exempt"

    2) Duplicate your quiz

    • Duplicate the quiz before setting up Respondus
    • Hide the duplicated quiz
    • Provide special access to the hidden quiz to the students who are exempt from the Lockdown Browser

    25. I have several students in my class with extra-time as an accommodation. Can I provide them all with the highest extra-time accommodation?

    Providing students with various time-based accommodations with the highest accommodation of extra time is not consistent with inclusive pedagogical practices as it may constitute an unfair advantage for students who will require only a fraction of the additional duration. Student Accessibility and Achievement, therefore, recommends that the most equitable option is to provide accommodations in a way that is consistent with each student’s individual accommodation, which has been determined in conversation with an Access Services Advisor.

    Questions and feedback?

    Any concerns or questions that instructors or administrators have related to accommodated exams coordinated by Student Accessibility and Achievement can be directed to the claire.burrows [at] mcgill.ca (Exam Center Manager ,) or the access.exams [at] mcgill.ca (Exam Centre Coordinators) .

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