Students with Disabilities in Your Classroom
• What is the college's obligation to students with disabilities?
• What is my obligation as an instructor?
• What should I do if a student identifies him/herself to me as a person with a disability?
• What is the procedure for students receiving accommodations?
• What is the faculty procedure for testing accommodations on campus?
• What do I need to know about pop quizzes?
• What is the faculty procedure for testing accommodations online?
• What if the requested accommodation conflicts with my course structure and/or policies?
• Faculty Tip Sheet
Jerry's Vlog- What it's like to have ADHD
Social Model Animation
*Click to View New Information about Asperger Syndrome* (Part 1)
*Asperger's Video (Part 2)
*AANE-Asperger's Association of New England
What is the college's obligation to students with disabilities?
By law, and by policy, the college is committed to provide equal access for all qualified individuals to its programs and educational opportunities. The need for physical access (elevators, ramps, etc.) is obvious to most of us, but access needs also include the curriculum itself and measures of evaluation. Academic adjustments may include special seating, testing accommodations, use of adaptive technology, or presentation of course materials in alternate formats. The college has designated Linda Weinberg, Coordinator of Access and Equity Services, to identify appropriate accommodations and to coordinate the provision of these services.
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What is my obligation as an instructor?
You are an agent of the college and as such share the college's obligations to provide access within your classroom and curriculum. Your course outline should include the following disability statements:
It is the college's policy to provide, on an individual basis, reasonable accommodations to students with disabilities, which may affect their ability to fully participate in program or course activities or to meet course requirements. This material is available in alternative formats upon request.
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What should I do if a student identifies him/herself to me as a person with a disability?
Ask the student if he or she has been in contact with Linda Weinberg, Coordinator of Access and Equity Services and/or the Resnick Learning Center. If not, refer the student. You should not personally collect and/or maintain any disability documentation, nor should you make a determination as to the existence of a disability or the reasonableness of a request without consultation. Unless you are willing to provide a requested modification to all students, you should not provide it to any student without having first received an accommodation memo from the Coordinator.
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What is the procedure for students receiving accommodations?
The student must provide the Coordinator of Access and Equity Services appropriate documentation identifying the disability and the limitations relating to learning. An accommodation plan is then developed between the student and the Coordinator. Appropriate classroom, testing and other accommodations are identified on a written Memorandum of Academic Accommodations, which the student delivers to each faculty member from whom he or she is requesting accommodations. For online instruction it is the faculty's responsibility to forward the signed accommodation plan to the Office of Access & Equity Services as soon as possible.
You are entitled to reasonable notice of any requested accommodation. We encourage you and the student to discuss the particulars of the request.
Recognizing the importance of allowing students with disabilities equal access to professors during the testing process, we recommend testing in class, wherever possible. Students needing only extended time and a distraction-reduced environment can be permitted to take their tests in the classroom and faculty can provide the accommodation.
If this is not possible, or if additional accommodations are required (use of a reader, scribe or computer), the student must follow the policy and procedure guidelines by submitting an Accommodated Testing Notification at least 3 days in advance. The Instructions for Accommodated Testing Form must be attached to the exam and delivered to the Testing Center. Please be aware that the student is responsible for arranging exam testing with you and the testing center.
As a professor you are responsible for providing students with the required reading material well in advance of the start of class, a time period that students with disabilities may need so they can get materials in the proper format. Faulty who knowingly and without good cause fail to submit textbook adoptions seven weeks before the start of class will be held responsible for any complaint regarding inaccessible products and services.
A recent case at the University of California at Berkeley resulted in an 18-page out of court settlement based upon inaccessible library materials.
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What is the faculty procedure for testing accommodations on campus?
Test will be administered during Testing Hours 8am-4pm. A student might need to take a test at a different time than the class to accommodate their extended time.
- Student Test Request
Receive an email of an approved Accommodated Testing Notification from the Access and Equity Office 72 hours, (3 working days) prior to the test date if they are taking a test at the Resnick Learning Center. *Please do not submit a test if you don't get this request.
- Directions for Delivering Tests
The following information is provided for SUNY Delhi faculty who participate in accommodated student testing in the Resnick Learning Center.
- Hand Delivery Method
Examinations can be delivered by hand to the testing room, Bush Hall Room 222, between 8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. An Instructions for Accommodated Testing Form must be attached to each examination.
- Student Delivery Method
Students may pick up the examination from their instructor. It should be placed in a sealed envelope with the instructor's signature across the seal. The instructor will be notified if the seal has been broken. The Instructions for Accommodated Testing form should be attached to each examination.
- Delivery via E-mail attachment
An electronic option is to send the examination as a .doc, pdf, or .rtf file attachment to firstname.lastname@example.org. The examination and Instructions for Accommodated Testing form should be sent 48 hours prior to the test date.
- Returning the Examination
Faculty may pick up completed tests in the Resnick Learning Center, have them returned via inter-campus mail, or returned electronically (email) as specified on the Instructions for Accommodated Testing Form.
- English Language Learner (ELL)
Students whose primary language is not English may also be accommodated for extended-time testing. Approval would be granted through the Coordinator of English Language Learner (ELL) in the Learning Center. For additional information, please contact Mrs. Sharon Ruetenik, Bush Hall 220. Call 607-746-4196 or e-mail email@example.com.
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What do I need to know about pop quizzes?
Administering Pop-Quizzes to Students with Disabilities
- Allow the student additional time after class to complete the quiz.
- Administer the pop quiz at the end of the class.
- If the test has four questions and you allow the class ten minutes to take the quiz, grade the student on two questions or three questions, depending upon whether the student is entitled to time and a half or double time.
- Allow the student to take the quiz in a previously agreed upon location near the classroom. The student would return to class after the extended test time.
- If none of the above options are feasible, another possibility would be for the student to take the pop quiz without extended test time, but the instructor would not count the grade for or against the student.
- For those professors who want to give pop quizzes but who do not want to use extended time from class to give the quizzes, a few ideas are offered below:
- Give quizzes at the end of class and allow the student to stay later if the student does not have a schedule conflict or, if they have a scheduled break (in longer classes) they could try giving the quiz before the break and those who need more time (disability and not) could work into the break.
- Ask student to come to office for an oral pop quiz as soon after class as possible
- Consider why pop quizzes are used and the purpose of them and then create a different method to reach the same purpose. Examples include:
- Hand out questions at end of class to be turned in prior to the next class
- Send "pop quiz" questions by e-mail 12 hours prior to class and ask the students to have the questions complete by the beginning of class
- Put questions on a web site or on Blackboard for students to get and answer at some point before the next class.
- Distribute questions during class and have small group discuss.
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What is the faculty procedure for testing accommodations online?
You are required to provide the student who presents you with an accommodation plan their extended time in the online environment. (This does not mean unlimited time. Their plan will advise you of the required time extension)
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What if the requested accommodation conflicts with my course structure and/or policies?
You may have to make an adjustment in your structure or policies, if not doing so will discriminate against the student because of the disability. However, while the need for accommodation in a particular case is not negotiable, there are often alternate ways to provide the accommodation. Accommodation must be sensitive to the fundamental structure and objectives of your course. If you believe that a requested accommodation will so alter your course, immediately consult with the coordinator. What constitutes a reasonable request in one course, or even section of a course, may not be reasonable in another.
Feel free in all cases to discuss methods of accommodation with the student and with the Coordinator.
The college has hired you for your expertise in your field and in the classroom. We do not expect you to have expertise in the field of disability and postsecondary education. Let us help you create the best possible learning environment for both you and your students.
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Faculty Tip Sheet
- Assist students in following the university’s policies, such as possible requirements that all requests for accommodation be referred to the Access and Equity Office and not be handled by individual faculty members alone. This protects students, faculty, and the institution by ensuring consistency and takes the responsibility off individual faculty members, to determine whether an accommodation is appropriate or how to provide it. Violations have been found in cases where faculty members have not followed institutional policies.
- Ask questions if you don’t understand something or are not sure how to proceed — your Access and Equity Office can be very helpful in this regard.
- Respect the privacy of students with disabilities. They need not disclose their disability to fellow students. While they must disclose disability to a designated official at your college in order to access accommodations, this does not require disclosure to everyone. Treat disability information which has been disclosed to you as confidential.
- Treat students with disabilities with the same courtesies you would afford to other students.
- Hold up your end with regard to accommodations which have been determined to be appropriate.
- Provide the academic accommodation which has been approved by the institution’s designee. (Access and Equity Coordinator) Not providing may subject your institution or yourself to liability.
- Provide extended time for tests, for those who have accommodation plans. Be careful because if you start providing for those who do not have accommodation plans with our office you are setting past precedence and might have to provide for all.
- Help students secure a note taker if stated on their accommodation plan. This may include class members to volunteering to take notes, or you providing your class materials.
- Allow students to record lectures if it’s stated on their accommodation plan.
- Provide copies of exams in the required time frame to the Access and Equity Office in order for a student to take the examination under alternate circumstances, such as extended time, using a scribe or braille, etc.
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