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Dictation/Scribe

Instructional practice of recording/writing the student's exact spoken response or other form(s) of response when the student has difficulty with writing for any number of reasons. Dictation/scribe is provided so that the instructional focus- answering, showing what you know, getting ideas out, composing- isn't interrupted by motor, visual, organizational, behavioral, or other difficulties.

 

Allowable on at least one state assessment

Assistive Technology

Examples Include:

  • Writing responses that a student dictates/speaks.

  • Writing responses that a student signs.

  • Writing responses that a student points to, including eye pointing/eye gaze or partner-assisted scanning.

  • Writing what a student says using symbols on a communication system.

How to Implement:

  • 1.

    Assess the level of writing support the student needs based on their writing samples, observations, and/or physical support needs. Consider the appropriate level of

    Assess the level of writing support the student needs based on their writing samples, observations, and/or physical support needs. Consider the appropriate level of student independence.

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  • 2.

    Based on the student's need, try different low-tech or high-tech tools to see if they’re helpful and can reduce the need for dictation. Low-tech

    Based on the student's need, try different low-tech or high-tech tools to see if they’re helpful and can reduce the need for dictation.

    1. Low-tech examples can include: pencil grips, slant boards, adapted paper, manual communication/AAC board, multiple choice options, graphic organizers, sentence stems, etc.
    2. High-tech examples can include: word processing, speech-to-text software, communication/AAC device.
    3. Consult with your campus occupational therapist or assistive technology member if help is needed to get these tools or for extra support.

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  • 3.

    Collaborate with team members (related service staff or instructional staff, student, parent) to tease out which assignments need dictation versus other supports.  If additional

    Collaborate with team members (related service staff or instructional staff, student, parent) to tease out which assignments need dictation versus other supports.  If additional information is needed when deciding about the most effective support for given tasks, see How to Select an Appropriate Accommodation.

    Over reliance on adult support for dictation can have unintended consequences such as not sufficiently learning writing conventions or editing skills.

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  • 4.

    Establish a routine or procedure for dictation. A. Predetermine who will be the student's scribe. B. Designate the location, materials and time for dictation/sign/other

    Establish a routine or procedure for dictation.

    A. Predetermine who will be the student's scribe.

    B. Designate the location, materials and time for dictation/sign/other response modes to occur.

    C. Provide time for the student to review the transcription to make edits.

    D. Document the student's scribe for the assignment.

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  • 5.

    For short answer and writing assignments, provide frequent practice opportunities for the student to learn how to respond orally, through sign, or through other

    For short answer and writing assignments, provide frequent practice opportunities for the student to learn how to respond orally, through sign, or through other response modes. Explicitly teach: think it > "say" it > check it > fix it. 


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  • 6.

    Coach and conference with the student for grade level appropriate editing.  If reading support is also needed, read back to the student what was

    Coach and conference with the student for grade level appropriate editing.  If reading support is also needed, read back to the student what was dictated.

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  • 7.

    Wean student from writing conferences to assess the student’s editing skills; expect grade level spelling, mechanics and grammar, as appropriate.

    Wean student from writing conferences to assess the student’s editing skills; expect grade level spelling, mechanics and grammar, as appropriate.

  • 8.

    Set expectations with the student for moving toward tools that build independence. If it seems like the student will need dictation/scribe for the long term

    Set expectations with the student for moving toward tools that build independence. If it seems like the student will need dictation/scribe for the long term, explore assistive technology options that may help the student gain more independence.

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  • 9.

    Monitor and record the student’s progress and satisfaction with the accommodation.

    Monitor and record the student’s progress and satisfaction with the accommodation.

  • 10.

    Share progress and effectiveness with the student, the educational team, and the family.

    Share progress and effectiveness with the student, the educational team, and the family.

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Note: Review STAAR Test Administrator Manual for allowable use of Transcribing (Basic and Complex) during test administration. 

The educator will write exactly what the student says/responds. In order for this accommodation to generalize to use on state assessment, the transcriber must understand the boundaries of the assistance being provided. TEA has specific guidelines about how to transcribe the student’s responses including how to indicate the student’s spelling, punctuation, and capitalization.