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Support for exams

Some deaf young people get support in exams.

If you find it harder to read and write compared with other people in your class, you should ask your Teacher of the Deaf, or the person who organises support for students at your school or college, about getting support in exams or tests.

Support you might be able to get for exams includes:

Extra time

This is usually 25%. For a two hour exam that’s an extra half hour.

Modified papers

This is when an exam paper has been checked over by a Teacher of the Deaf to make sure the language is easy to read.

Live speaker

This is someone who speaks what’s said (so you can lip-read them) when a sound recording is played in a foreign language listening exam.

Sign language interpretation

This is when a BSL interpreter or communication support worker translates questions into sign language. This isn’t available for English, Welsh, Gaelic or foreign language exams.

Oral language modifier

This is someone who reads out exam questions in a different way to help you understand. This can be done using speech or sign supported English. This isn’t available in Scotland.

Your school or college must prove that you need extra support with exams.

If your school or college says you can’t have any support and you disagree with them, you can get in touch with our friendly Helpline by emailing or chatting online at

More info

Check out Priya’s Story about getting help with exams!

Check out Priya’s Story about getting help with exams in British Sign Language (BSL!)


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National Deaf Children's Society

Registered Charity: England and Wales (1016532) and Scotland (SC040779)

Helpline: 0808 800 8880

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