Dyslexic student fights for extra time for university entrance exam – rts.ch

Dyslexic student fights for extra time for university entrance exam – rts.ch
Dyslexic student fights for extra time for university entrance exam – rts.ch

The Federal Court accepted the appeal of a dyslexic student who requested additional time for the admission test for veterinary medicine studies. The file is referred to the Berne justice system so that it can order an independent expertise.

Meeting in public hearing on Tuesday, the 2nd Court of Public Law made its decision by a majority of three judges to two. At the end of a bitter discussion, she gave up deciding on the merits and requested an expert opinion on the aptitude test for medical studies (AMS).

Experts will have to determine whether the entrance exam to medical and veterinary studies within the framework of the numerus clausus lends itself to granting additional time for dyslexic candidates. For the first time in the history of the court, the proceedings were translated into sign language.

Biased opinions

The judges ruled that the University of Bern, which had refused the student’s request, had based itself on the biased opinions of the center which designed this AMS test and the Swissuniversities rectors’ association.

As a reminder, this exam is designed to assess reasoning, memory, comprehension, resistance to stress and speed, in particular. Additional time for certain candidates would distort the results and the ranking for the numerus clausus, according to the university.

Linguistic differences

During much of the debate, it seemed that the rejection of the appeal would prevail. In fact, the three German-speaking magistrates were opposed to the two French-speaking magistrates, the former believing that it was appropriate to follow the opinion of academic circles. It was the proposal of the judge-rapporteur concluding that the case should be referred back which made it possible to avoid an outright rejection of the appeal, which would have opened the door to an appeal before the European Court of Human Rights.

Based on the hypothesis that the AMS would be distorted if additional time was granted to dyslexic candidates, German-speaking judges spoke a lot about “overcompensation”. According to them, such a correction would risk benefiting dyslexics to the detriment of other candidates. We would thus find ourselves facing a “collision of inequalities”, according to one of the magistrates.

Jacques Dubochet dyslexic

For their part, the two French-speaking judges recalled that the AMS was supposed to select the best for medical studies by evaluating their aptitudes. “Is a test that does not compensate for the reading and comprehension difficulties of certain candidates appropriate and justified?” asked the president. “Does it have its place in Swiss universities?”

And to recall that the Nobel Prize winner Jacques Dubochet was the first student diagnosed with dyslexia in the canton of Vaud.

ats/lan

#Swiss

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