Requests for Exam Accommodations
Exam accommodations are changes to standard exam conditions due to documented medical issues or other protected grounds and not hotel rooms or other travel options/accommodations.
You may submit a request for exam accommodations if you experience permanent or temporary functional limitation(s) due to a physical impairment, medical issue or other disability which substantially limits one or more major life activities. Requests for exam accommodations are also considered for pregnancy, breastfeeding, issues relating to creed, need for assistive devices (e.g. hearing aids, wheelchair, etc.) and other reasons.
Exam accommodations candidates (EAC), health professionals and other entities may email EAC@pebc.ca for all questions about exam accommodations policies and processes.
To request exam accommodations, follow these steps:
- You must submit a Request for Exam Accommodations form and one or more Health Professional Assessment and Recommendations forms (for medical issues). You must submit a new Request for Exam Accommodations form each time you apply for a PEBC examination and you may need to submit new or updated supporting documentation.
- Complete electronically and sign the Request for Exam Accommodations form. For medical issues, instruct the health professional(s) overseeing your care to complete electronically and sign the Health Professional Assessment and Recommendations form(s).
- PEBC does not require a diagnosis to consider a request for exam accommodations. PEBC requires objective evidence showing that your limitations connected to a protected ground impact your ability to access a PEBC examination under standard conditions. Exam accommodations are provided to minimize the impact of any needs or limitations connected to a protected ground on your ability to equally participate in a PEBC examination. See “Need for Objective Evidence” below.
- Gather supporting documentation as needed.
- Send your Request for Exam Accommodations form and supporting documentation to PEBC. Instruct your health professional to send the Health Professional Assessment and Recommendations form and supporting documentation directly to PEBC. All documents can be sent via email, fax or courier (details are given on each form).
- The deadline to request exam accommodations is the same day as the exam deadline date. PEBC must receive both forms and supporting documentation before the deadline. You are strongly encouraged to submit your request as early as possible.
- Within two weeks after receiving your completed and signed Request for Exam Accommodations form and all supporting documentation, including the Health Professional Assessment and Recommendations form if required, PEBC emails you a confirmation of receipt that explains the next steps of the process. If you do not receive this confirmation of receipt email, contact PEBC immediately by using the email address found on the Request for Exam Accommodations form.
- After the exam deadline date, PEBC reviews all requests for exam accommodations. PEBC considers each request individually, based on the information you submit. All requests for exam accommodations are confidential and subject to review and approval.
- When necessary, PEBC may consult with third-party consultants (e.g., medical, legal) for the purpose of obtaining expert advice in evaluating your request. PEBC may also request additional information from you and/or the health professional(s) overseeing your care. It is your responsibility to participate in the process of supplying sufficient supporting evidence, responding to requests for more information and meeting deadlines.
- Within one month of the exam deadline date, PEBC emails a decision letter outlining what exam accommodations, if any, are being offered. PEBC will advise you if there will be a delay in providing you with a decision. If you are offered exam accommodations, the decision letter includes an agreement for you to review, sign and send back to PEBC by the deadline given.
- If you are not satisfied with the exam accommodations offered by PEBC, you may petition for reconsideration of the decision according to PEBC’s Process for Handling Complaints, Concerns and Appeals.
- Personal items including medical, assistive and mobility devices that are permitted into the examination or require an exam accommodation may be different for computer-based (MCQ) and performance (OSCE/OSPE) examinations. For more information about permitted personal items, see About the Examination for your upcoming examination(s).
- For both computer-based (MCQ) and performance (OSCE/OSPE) examinations, exam accommodations may not be available at your preferred location, date or time. Subject to PEBC’s obligations at law, PEBC reserves the right to assign you to an exam centre where your exam accommodations are available, as certain exam accommodations may not be available at some exam centres. This may require that you accept assignment to an exam centre other than your preferred exam centre choice(s) and incur all costs related to travel. For computer-based (MCQ) examinations, you may also be required to accept assignment on a day or at a time other than your preferred choice(s) and/or to take your exam using remote proctoring.
- Since arrangements for some exam accommodations may have significant cost and other resource implications, you are bound by the conditions listed in the signed exam accommodations agreement letter.
- No changes will be made to exam content, exam assessment, exam format, PEBC rules of conduct, and policies and procedures relating to same.
- After you attempt a PEBC examination, PEBC will not consider complaints or appeals based on an assertion that the exam accommodations listed in the executed exam accommodations agreement letter were not adequate or that not receiving exam accommodations was inappropriate. Any concerns regarding the sufficiency of the offered exam accommodations must be resolved with PEBC in advance of the examination and documented in an executed exam accommodations letter.
- Exam accommodations serve a different purpose between educational settings and certification exams. In educational settings, exam accommodations are provided to support academic success. For certification exams, like PEBC’s exams, exam accommodations are provided to give equal and fair access to examinations, allowing candidates with documented functional limitations to demonstrate their competence without giving any advantage over other candidates. Therefore, you should not expect PEBC to automatically offer the same exam accommodations you received during your academic studies.
- As test anxiety on its own is not considered a disability and most candidates experience some form of test anxiety before and on exam day, experiencing test anxiety is not sufficient to receive exam accommodations.
- Candidates are strongly encouraged not to attempt an examination and to withdraw if, prior to the exam, they are ill or have other extraordinary personal circumstances, i.e., bereavement, recent physical injury, etc. that may affect their exam performance.
Emergency Requests after the Exam Deadline Date
If you experience a new medical issue such as an injury or other emergency situation after the exam deadline date, you may make an emergency request for medical/assistive/mobility devices or other accommodations by submitting:
- a Request for Exam Accommodations form as early as possible before exam day
- for medical issues, documentation that verifies the medical issue and the need for a medical/assistive/mobility device or other exam accommodation
- for other issues, supporting documentation where required
If approved, PEBC will attempt to make appropriate arrangements with the exam centre. If PEBC is unable to make arrangements before exam day, you may attempt the examination without exam accommodations or withdraw.
Requests such as additional testing time, flexible breaks, a separate room, etc. are difficult to accommodate after the exam deadline date even for new or emergency situations.
Requests on Examination Day
The examination process cannot be interrupted. Last-minute requests for exam accommodations or individual arrangements, made at an exam centre on exam day, will not be accommodated.
PEBC’s Duty to Accommodate
PEBC recognizes and is committed to meeting its duty to accommodate candidates based on needs or limitations relating to protected grounds under applicable human rights legislation, including the grounds of disability and religion. Reasonable exam accommodations, supported by objective evidence demonstrating the need for such accommodations, will be provided up to the point of undue hardship.
It is important to recognize that the purpose of exam accommodations is not to guarantee a successful result or to optimize your performance. Rather, exam accommodations are provided to minimize the impact of any needs or limitations connected to a protected ground on your ability to equally participate in a PEBC examination alongside other individuals who do not have such needs or limitations.
Assessment of Request for Exam Accommodations
PEBC will review all requests for exam accommodations received by the exam application deadline date. Please note that, after reviewing your request for exam accommodations, PEBC may determine that no exam accommodations are required. Reasons why a request for exam accommodations may be denied include, but are not limited to, the following:
- the request was not linked to a protected ground
- the information and evidence provided was not sufficient to support the existence of a protected ground and/or a need for exam accommodations
- the evidence did not demonstrate that failure to provide the requested exam accommodations would impose an unfair burden, obligation, or disadvantage based on a protected ground
- your request did not contain complete information or sufficient objective supporting evidence, or such information was provided after the deadline
- objective evidence was received that contradicts the information provided by you
Need for Objective Evidence
You must submit objective evidence demonstrating that your functional limitations or other needs and limitations relating to a protected ground impact your equal participation in a PEBC examination. With respect to requests for exam accommodations based on disability, self-reporting of symptoms, including to a health professional who completes the Health Professional Assessment and Recommendations form, is not considered objective evidence. Depending on the nature of your disability, objective evidence includes, but is not limited to, formal psychoeducational/psychological assessments, copies of elementary, high-school and university transcripts, any childhood or adult information corroborating significant functional impairment, written letters of concern from educational settings due to severe inattention and impulsivity symptoms, evidence of multiple traffic accidents, formal warnings from employers due to inattention/errors, performance on standardized tests when no extra time was given.