Resources for Faculty
Faculty play an important role in assuring that all individuals, including those with disabilities, have access to course content and instructional activities. Participation in lectures, written assignments, field or lab work, exams, class discussions, and computer applications may be impacted by an individual’s disability. A student with a disability may need accommodations in one or more of these areas in order to gain or demonstrate knowledge of the course content.
Universal Design is an approach to designing course instruction, materials, and content to benefit people of all learning styles without adaptation or retrofitting. By incorporating Universal Design principles in instruction that allow students with disabilities access to the classroom, you may also be designing instruction that works better for everyone in the class. Classes designed with this concept in mind offer a variety of methods of content presentation, flexible teaching strategies, and options for demonstrating mastery of course content.
Accommodations are defined as:
Academic adjustments that allow students with disabilities to access information and materials and to demonstrate knowledge or mastery in a manner that is not affected negatively by the disability
Academic accommodations are those adjustments which allow equal access to academic programs and include classroom and assessment accommodations.
Some frequently used academic accommodations include but are not limited to:
- Extended time on exams
- Exams administered on computer
- Exams administered in a setting that minimizes distractions
- Volunteer note-taker
- Textbooks in alternative format
- Use of calculator
All personal services (attendant care) and equipment (e.g., wheelchairs, hearing aids) are the responsibility of each student and will not be provided by the Center for Accessibility Resources.
Faculty should include the following statement in the course syllabus regarding services and accommodations for students with disabilities participating in traditional classes:
“Any student who needs classroom or testing accommodations is invited to present letters from the Center for Accessibility Resources and discuss accommodations with me after class or during office hours. The Center for Accessibility Resources is located in the Lebegern Learning Commons — Mund Suite 002. Students may schedule an appointment by calling 717-867-6028.”
Faculty should include the following statement in the course syllabus regarding services and accommodations for students with disabilities participating in online classes:
“Any student who needs accommodations is invited to send letters from the Center for Accessibility Resources and discuss accommodations with me. The Center for Accessibility Resources is located in the Lebegern Learning Commons — Mund Suite 002. Students may schedule an appointment by calling 717-867-6028.”
Students who are eligible for course notes as a reasonable accommodation will have this designation on the accommodation letter. Eligible students must request a note-taker using the online note-taker request form, which notifies the Center for Accessibility Resources that a note-taker is being requested for a specific course. Once a request is received, the Center for Accessibility Resources will email the faculty member asking him/her to seek a volunteer note-taker for the course. It is important that all note-takers report to the Center office for instructions in how to upload course notes to a designated note-taker course in CANVAS. Students who will be receiving course notes will be responsible for downloading their own notes via the note-taker course in CANVAS.
When a note-taker is requested for a course, faculty should:
- Contact the class via an announcement, email, or CANVAS message requesting a note-taker without identifying the student who requested this accommodation.
- Review the notes of any volunteer to ensure that notes are comprehensive.
- Send the note-taker to the Center for Accessibility Resources to register as a volunteer note-taker and email the name of the volunteer to the director of Accessibility Resources. The Center will follow up with special instructions for the note-taker.
- Volunteer note-takers receive 15 campus service hours for the semester.
- Note-takers must be registered with the Center for Accessibility Resources in order to receive service hours for the semester.
- Note-takers should use black or blue ink pen for taking notes to ensure clear scanning capability. Typed notes may be required for some students with print disabilities. (We will inform the note-taker if notes must be typed and will grant additional service hours for typed notes.)
- Notes must be labeled by Course, Section, and Professor; Example: SOC-110–06 J. Smith
- Note-takers are required to scan notes at least once per week and the post course notes to their designated CANVAS note-taker section. (A scanner is located in the Lebegern Learning Commons—Center for Writing and Peer Tutoring—MUND.) The Center for Accessibility Resources staff distribute notes confidentially to receiving students.
Examination accommodations may be provided to eligible students with disabilities. When approved as an allowable accommodation by the Director of Accessibility Resources, exam accommodations will be noted on the student’s letter of accommodation. Example accommodations may include additional time, reduced distraction environment, use of computer and assistive technology, scribe, etc.
Faculty utilizing the Center for Accessibility Resources testing facility must:
- Provide examinations to the Center within 3-5 days of the scheduled exam.
- Complete a proctoring form for all examinations to be administered in the Center testing facility.
- Provide any additional media necessary for students to complete the exam (e.g., if exam items are presented to students in color, the faculty member must deliver color copies to the Center).
Approximately 3 days prior to a scheduled exam, the Center assistant will email the faculty member indicating the student(s) who have scheduled to take the exam in the Center testing facility. Questions regarding examinations administered in the Center for Accessibility Resources may be sent to Kris Shutter, Accessibility Resources Assistant at firstname.lastname@example.org or ext. 6028.