Taking a test where nothing is allowed, only the clothes you are wearing Vs Diabetes supplies

Something that I just thought about today for my GRE test that am going to take after 2 days. Will they ask me to disconnect my pump and CGM before entering the test room???

Since they don’t allow test takers to carry calculator, cell phone, watches, not even having white scratch paper. They will provide you with whats needed?

Did anyone experience such situation? Did they understand and allow you to have your diabetes gadgets?


I don’t have a pump, but I did recently take an exam for a PE (professional engineer) license. They allow you to take one of their few allowed calculators, but nothign else. They have an “amnesty box” they place right outside of the door where you can place cell phones, etc. I contact them ahead of time, they look at the meter, and they had me keep it in the amnesty box. If I needed to test, I leave the room and test next to the bathrooms where they have proctors to verify only test takers enter and they randomly enter the restroom to verify no one is doing anything inappropriate. They also let me take food and eat it if necessary. When I got up to test, I grabbed food from my bag and my meter, just in case I needed something to eat at the time. No food is allowed to be consumed during my exam.

I would contact them ahead of time and ask them what protocol is. They should be able to make a reasonable accommodation for a diabetic. It is reasonable to allow a diabetic to test and eat, if necessary.

Good luck on your exam. It’s selfish, but better you than me. = )

According to this page on ETS’s GRE General Test site, you do have the right to reasonable accommodations because of your diabetes, including a break for snacks. However, you have to let them know of your need when you register for the exam, not the day you go to take the test.

Specifically, the section that mentions diabetes reads:

“Health-related needs” refers to any of a variety of medical conditions that impact a major life activity, such as those affecting digestion, immune function, respiration, circulation, endocrine functions, etc. Documented health needs also include conditions such as diabetes, epilepsy and chronic pain. Some test takers with documented health needs require only minor accommodations. Minor accommodations include, but are not limited to, special lighting, an adjustable table or chair and/or breaks for medications or snacks. Test takers requiring minor accommodations because of health needs must submit Parts I (Applicant Information) and II (Testing accommodations requested) of the Request for Nonstandard Testing Accommodations form. They must include a letter of support from a medical doctor or other qualified professional stating the nature of the condition and the reason for the minor accommodation requested, as well as the appropriate registration form and fees. [emphasis mine]

If you didn’t submit those forms, theoretically, you could be excluded from the testing. The proctors have no idea that what you’ve got there is really an insulin pump and won’t do your quantitative section calculations for you or will upload an outstanding essay.

Because I wasn’t on insulin when I took the GRE, I do not have any personal experience with how the proctors would handle your pump, should they become aware of it. However, since the test does last for several hours, there is a possibility you will have to have a snack, and those decidedly are not allowed without prior approval for an accommodation.

What are you planning to study in graduate school, where are you thinking of going, and what degree do you want? I hope everything goes well for you at the testing and you’re able to take that next step toward your career!

If you can handle a professional licensing exam, I’m sure you could handle grad school! Besides, there’s a need for more female engineers :wink:

Tee and Angela, thanks for your reply. I found the part about the disability thing and figure out that I should had done it when I registered. Didn’t find anything related to diabetes. Thanks for finding and sharing.

I will give them a call tomorrow and see what they have to say!

Thanks again girls ;o)

You’re welcome! So, what did you find out? Are they going to give you a hassle over your pump?

I took the GRE but it was like 25 years ago and I don’t recall what I did about my meter? I was a bit more lax then but I don’t think I’d have done something that cost money without keeping track of stuff?

I was not on the pump at the time I took them, but I was allowed to bring my meter and glucose tablets with me. I know that I called ahead of time but unfortunately most of it is a blur at this point!

Well as what Tom said " it is a blur at this point". I didn’t call and am planing to take my chances. The worst thing, they will ask my to disconnect my pump and keep it with the CGM and other stuff.
Hopefully the locker (or whatever they use to keep test takers stuff) is close to the test room and that my CGM will keep reading my BG. I will test my BG in every break and bolus if I was high

I took the GRE after I was pumping and I got accommodations ahead of time. When I was signing up, literally the day before I was going send the paperwork in (I wasn’t going to request anything), there was an article in the Boston Globe (my home paper) about this girl who wasn’t allowed to take the test b/c the proctor wouldn’t let her take her insulin pump in. So I called my doc and they sent me a letter no problem. I signed up and they gave me the accomodation of allowing me to take my stuff in and to take a break if I needed to.
When I got to the testing site, the proctor was like “oh I’m type 2! do what ever you need to do” and we talked about insulin pumps for a few minutes!
So it totally will be up to the proctor. Maybe you’ll get a fellow PWD lol!

I took the GRE back in 2005 so I could return to grad school in '06. I wasn’t allowed anything in the testing room for either the General test or the Psychology Subject Test. In both cases, I had to leave my purse in a secured area, and that included the meter. What I remember about taking the GREs back in 1988 is that they left me feeling a bit brain dead and that we had to put our bags in the front of the room, but that was before diabetes, so that doesn’t count :wink:

They’ve made some interesting changes to the GRE since you took it. The biggest one is that they junked the multiple choice logic/analytical reasoning section for an analytical writing section. So, no more trying to figure out who Amanda can be seated next to if the dinner is held on a Saturday with John at the head of the table (remember those?). Now it’s “Tell us why you agree or disagree with the above statement” and “What evidence is needed to strengthen or weaken the above statement?” Definitely puts a new spin on the old torture routine!

Good luck Ahmad! I hope it goes well for you.

I’m just relieved that you get to wear clothes Al. It’s Freaking cold out there. :smiley: Good Luck on your test Young Man!!

Yaaa it is really cold here most of the time it is below 20 F. Thanks for the wishes

Here is what happened. I went and toke the test yesterday, the proctor (as what Jackie refereed to) allowed me to keep my insulin pump since it is attached to my body. I don’t think she know that I can disconnect it! Lucky me.

I emptied my pockets in the locker, choose the one closest to the testing room. During break I checked on the CGM and it was working gr8, my BG was 55! I had some sugars and went inside the room, can’t waste 15 mnt…continued the test and after I had finished the test it was low again in the 50s -_-

Actually, the accommodations for diabetes are a little more specific and enlightened now (http://www.ets.org/disabilities/accommodations/). In fact it says “Test takers who wear an insulin pump do not need to be approved for accommodations unless the pump is especially noisy.” If you do believe that you need to have supplies to treat a hypo, then you will need to apply for accommodations. Should you need to apply for accommodations, the form are located here (http://www.ets.org/gre/general/register/disabilities). Personally, I would recommend you ask for accommodations even if you think the chances of needed them are slim to none. Think of it as insurance, you have invested too much in this test to take risks.

There should be no shame in asking for accommodations, you have a right to them and you deserve them. Despite that, I would heed Angela’s advice and even though you have a right to just arrive with your pump, it would be prudent to inform the proctor that you have a pump and may be changing settings during the test.

Thanks for the information! I found out that I need to take the GRE this summer for one of the 6 programs that I’m look at.

Sorry to hear about the lows, but here’s hoping the scores are great! If they aren’t where you want them to be, do you have time to retake the test before your application is due?

What kind of program are you looking to enter, Emily?

I’m looking at physician assistant programs.