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Special Educational Needs
Tuesday 09 November 2021

Response to Ofqual’s accessible assessments consultation

The Autism Education Trust, Ambitious about Autism and the National Autistic Society welcomes Ofqual’s consultation on draft guidance to make exams more accessible for pupils with special educational needs. This is a positive step towards creating a more inclusive education system. We encourage autistic people, families and teachers to respond to the consultation and make their voices heard.

Many autistic pupils interpret language differently to their neurotypical peers and may find complex language harder to understand. For example, autistic pupils may take the use of metaphors or abstract expressions literally. In an exam situation, this can hamper their understanding of tasks and ultimately have an impact on their success. 

This consultation will not reduce the level of knowledge being assessed through examination, rather it will ensure exam questions are presented in the most clear and accessible way. 

Through the work of the Autism Education Trust, educators continue to improve their autism understanding to help autistic pupils reach their potential in school. This consultation will ensure autistic pupils also receive a fair chance to demonstrate their skills and abilities in exams.