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Accessibility Services: Faculty Resources

The Office of Accessibility Services works closely with students and faculty to make the process of arranging classroom and testing modifications as easy as possible for everyone.

The information in this section will provide you with information on how to deliver the accommodations to your students.

If you have any questions or concerns about the accommodation process, please contact our office. If you have questions about a specific student’s accommodation, please contact the Director of Accessibility Services.

Proper Etiquette Tips

Syllabus Statement

One of the easiest and most effective things that a professor can do is to include a statement on the syllabus that invites students with disabilities to contact the professor and/or the Office of Accessibility Services.

“Wittenberg University strives to make all learning experiences as accessible as possible. If you anticipate or experience academic barriers based on your disability (including mental health, learning, chronic health, physical, hearing, vision and neurological, or temporary medical conditions, etc.), please let me know immediately so that we can privately discuss options. To establish reasonable accommodations, you must register with the Accessibility Services office by emailing accessibilityservices@wittenberg.edu. You can also find information on the Accessibility Services webpage found at www.wittenberg.edu/success. Please note that services are confidential, may take time to put into place, and are not retroactive. The Accessibility Services Office is located in the COMPASS: Sweet Success Center, Thomas Library, on the first floor.”

Disability-Related Accommodations

In every course, the professor identifies and defines the essential course requirements and measures whether they have been met. Based upon the student’s diagnosed condition, a discussion will be needed to determine how the student could meet the essential requirements of the course.

The Office of Civil Rights suggests using the questions to guide your discussion of what reasonable accommodations will look like in your class:

  • Is there classroom interaction between the instructor and students, and among students?
  • Do student contributions constitute a significant component of the learning process?
  • Does the fundamental nature of the course rely upon student participation as an essential method for learning?
  • To what degree does a student's failure to attend constitutes a significant loss to the educational experience of other students in the class?
  • What does the course description and syllabus say?
  • What is the method by which the final course grade is calculated?
  • What are classroom practices and policies regarding attendance?

Memo: Disclosure of Accommodation Need

Students who are registered with the Office of Accessibility Services will disclose their need for academic accommodations by giving you an Academic Modifications Memorandum (memo).

Academic Modifications Memorandum (Memo)

Accessibility Services creates an individualized memo for each student who is entitled to accommodations. The memo describes the specific modifications needed in the classroom and/or the testing environment.

Schedule a Meeting to Discuss Accommodation Delivery

Accessibility Services encourages students receiving a memo to contact their professors early in the semester to arrange individual meetings with each professor. The purpose of the meeting is to discuss the accommodations listed in the memo and how those accommodations will be implemented. By the end of this meeting, both the professor and the student should understand each other's responsibilities and how accommodations will be arranged.

If a student attempts to give you a memo immediately before a class session in which they will need the accommodation described in the memo, you have the right to inform the student that you will not be able to accommodate them on this occasion, but will do so on future occasions. If the student is asking for something not included on the memo, please refer the student to the Office of Accessibility Services.

Disabled Students without Memos

Sometimes a student who does not have a memo from Accessibility Services will indicate that they have a disability. These students should be referred to the Office of Accessibility Services. Wittenberg University requires students to establish eligibility for disability assistance before they may be accommodated in the classroom or in the residence halls. Accessibility Services is the office designated to collect and maintain confidential disability materials and to coordinate accommodations for students.

You should arrange disability modifications only for students who provide you a memo from Accessibility Services. No legal difficulties will be incurred by informing a student that he or she must provide an Accessibility Services memo in order to be accommodated. If a student brings you the documentation of a disabling condition, refer the student to Accessibility Services.

Arranging for Peer Copies of Class Notes

A disability may interfere with a student’s ability to take comprehensive class notes for a variety of reasons. Accessibility Services will work with these students to determine the best solution. The goal of this accommodation is to ensure that students have notes comparable to what they would have if their disability did not interfere with note taking. The student’s accommodations memo may indicate a need for:

  • Copy of lecture notes/PowerPoint slides
  • Note Taker
  • Appropriate use of personal computer in class
  • Permission to record lecture

Copies of Notes

If you are posting notes to Moodle, please clarify for the student whether these are complete study notes.  If comprehensive PowerPoint slides or notes are provided to all students, you have met this student’s need.

If you are not able to directly provide the student with complete study notes, please assist them in obtaining copies of notes from a classmate.

Make an announcement in class or via email requesting a note taker. Please do not reveal the name of the student with a disability. You can simply say, “This class requires the services of a note taker. Note taking is a paid student employment position. If interested, please let me know/respond to this email, and I will refer you to Accessibility Services for more information.” Please send the names of interested students to accessibilityservices@wittenberg.edu. If you do not get a volunteer on the first try, please make one more in-class announcement.

Laptop Use

If you have concerns about the use of laptops in your course, please contact the Accessibility Services Director to discuss options. If a student misuses this accommodation by spending time on email or social media during class time the student may lose this privilege.

Recording

It is legal for a student to record a lecture as an alternate method of accessing the class content. If you have concerns about how the material will be used after it is recorded, please contact Accessibility Services. At your request, the student recording your lectures can sign a privacy statement. Students may be recording with Smart-Pen, laptop or other recording device, this will be specified in their accommodation letter.

    Exam Accommodations

    Due to the limited space available to the Office of Accessibility Services and COMPASS.  We have implemented an online registration form for students to schedule to take their exams in COMPASS. Only students approved for exam related accommodations such as extended time, reduced distraction testing locations, use of a scribe/reader, etc. should use this form to request our office to proctor your exams. Students can access the form here.

    Once, the registration form has been submitted online, the students will receive an email confirmation with their test appointment. Professors will also receive a copy of the confirmation. Email or phone scheduling is not permitted.

    Students authorized for exam accommodations have three exam options:

    1. Take exams with the class without accommodations.
    2. Take exams with appropriate accommodations arranged by the professor.
    3. Schedule to take exams in COMPASS.

    Submitting Exams to COMPASS

    Please submit the exam or quiz material with exam cover sheet at least one (1) day prior to the scheduled exam to Accessibility Services via testingservices@wittenberg.edu. Click here to download a copy of the cover sheet.

    Disability-Related Attendance Accommodations

    Due to a disability, a student may need to miss class more often than is permitted by the existing class attendance policy, within reasonable limits. The student is expected to communicate with professor prior to each class missed, turn in work that is due, and make up what is missed. The student is responsible for arranging a meeting with the professor.

    In order to be valid, the disability-related accommodation form must be completed by the professor with the student present. The purpose of this agreement is to guide the conversation between the professor and student to help clarify how to make disability-related accommodations that do not compromise the integrity of the course.

    We understand that it can be difficult to balance meeting student needs and ensuring that all students are held to the same classroom standards. Per ADA, we must ensure that effort is made to address student needs and provide alternative solutions such as limited additional absences, online submission of assignments, deadline extensions, participation grade substitutions, etc. If this is not possible due to the nature of the course, please work with Accessibility Services so that we can document the reasons why an accommodation cannot be made.

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