Faculty Responsibilities for Accommodations in the Educational Environment
It is important that every student with a disability be provided equal access to educational materials, transmission processes in the classroom, and information presented within all aspects of class sessions and activities within each course. Below is the list of accommodations that are contained on the Graduate Student Assignment of Accommodations form. This form is submitted to you at the beginning of each semester by the qualifying student. Professors collaborate with students for the implementation of each accommodation that is provided to the student by ATS. Explanation of each of the accommodations is provided below.
A. Preferential seating
This accommodation is provided to students for a variety of reasons. A student with a visual impairment may request preferential seating at the front to see the slides or whiteboard more effectively. Students with hearing impairments may request this in order to better hear the professor or to accommodate a Sign Language interpreter. A student with anxiety may request preferential seating at the back of the room for easy access to the door in the event he/she would have a panic attack. Students with limited mobility may need access to a specific row or a wheelchair accessible table.
B. Access to Notes for Class
A student who has information processing issues or difficulty in transcribing class notes may qualify for access to notes for class. An example would be students who have hearing impairments must completely rely on note takers since they are unable to watch a Sign Language interpreter or read the professor’s lips and take notes at the same time. If a professor has the notes in electronical form, or in a form that is easily transmitted to the student, the professor may share the notes. Students may qualify for access to PowerPoint slides.
In other situations, a professor may make use of a Peer Notetaker, using the Notetaker Request Form. The professor works together with the qualifying student to identify another student in the course who could share a copy of each class session’s notes. Copies of class notes that are handwritten may be duplicated into a hard copy at the expense of the Disability Resource Center. If notes are electronic in nature, the Peer Notetaker may email the notes in an attachment. Professors are free to provide electronic copies of notes or PowerPoint slides at their own discretion.
C. Enlarged Course Handouts or Class Notes
Students who have visual impairment may qualify for enlarged course materials. The professor can either print out enlarged materials if there are processes in place that are conducive for this (such as bringing to class or emailing to a student enlarged handouts by using larger fonts for materials disseminated to the respective students). If the professor needs assistance in enlarging materials that require a copy machine, the Disability Resource Center will assist in the enlargement processes and expenses.
D. Alternative Testing
Students who have disabilities that impact test taking, such as reading impairment or anxiety disorders, may qualify for alternative testing accommodations. These may include, but are not limited to:
- Extended time (50% Additional Time) for all assessments, tests, & quizzes
- Reduced distraction environment – You may locate an alternate classroom or office that would be away from the distractions of other students and classroom noises. If assistance is needed in proctoring, contact the Disability Resource Center.
- Large Print – All assessment materials should be enlarged to the font size desired by the student.
- Braille or e-test formatted version of the exam – An alternate format of the test may be produced, in accordance with the instructions provided to you.
- Exam scribe – This is more typical for essay exams, which may require extensive writing for students with writing impairments.
- Exam reader or use of text-to-speech software – Some students may not have the visual ability to read the exam and will specify the alternate method of taking the exams.
- Oral testing – Certain students may have information processing issues that may qualify for oral exams to be administered to the student, usually by the professor in an individualized conference setting.
- Rest breaks – Certain students who have fatigue issues may qualify for rest breaks during an exam.
- Use of adaptive software – Certain students with visual impairment may require testing through the use of ZoomText, JAWS, Read & Write, or Dragon Naturally Speaking.
- Use of adaptive hardware – Certain students may require such hardware as a video magnifier, adaptive mice, or adaptive keyboards.
E. Extended Time on Due Dates
Students who qualify for this accommodation must complete and submit to you the Extended Time on Individual Assignments Agreement. The student must abide by the professor’s alternate due date schedule. Refer to the guidelines specified in this agreement.
F. Use of the Assistive Technology
There are a wide variety of assistive technologies available for students with disabilities that provide students with compensatory strategies in the learning process. If these are accommodations applicable to your course, the technology will be described and how it would interface with your course.
G. Accommodations Specialized in Nature
These accommodations are not as common and may be unique to the individual student.
- If the student qualifies for the ability to record lectures, the student must submit the Audio Recording Agreement.
- Students may qualify for taking pictures of the board or use of a computer during class.
- If a unique accommodation is permitted for the student, and the professor desires more information on the implementation of the accommodation, contact the Disability Resource Center.