Will I be notified of students with disabilities in my classes; and if so, when?
In some cases, DSO may notify instructors regarding students with disabilities prior to the first day of classes. For example:
How do I know if a student needs accommodations?
When documentation is received, it is evaluated by a review committee of rehabilitation specialists in order to determine accommodations for the student in each course. Letters directed to each individual faculty member are prepared by DSO and made available to the student for delivery to their instructor. This notification is the responsibility of the student requesting the accommodations. In some cases, an instructor signature is required on the form to be returned to DSO. In that case, an instructor copy is also provided for your records.
Classroom accommodations are specific and determined each semester based on course content and the student’s need for services. Documentation should be submitted directly to the Disability Services Office, not to the instructor.
What if I don’t agree with the accommodations as presented?
The college is legally obligated to provide “reasonable and appropriate” accommodations to students with disabilities. If faculty members have questions about authorized accommodations, they should consult with Disability Services. Denying an accommodation or confronting a student regarding a service or accommodation authorized by DSO could result in legal liability for the faculty/staff member. DSO is your best resource for your questions and concerns.
Should faculty/staff provide accommodations without official
notification from DSO?
For students with obvious physical disabilities, faculty/staff should accommodate the immediate need if possible.
For example: A student using a wheelchair may need wider aisles between desks. Students with a visual or hearing impairment may require preferential seating.
However, because granting accommodations without authorization may expose the faculty member and/or institution to legal liabilities, all students requesting academic accommodations should be referred to the Disability Services Office.
Why can’t the instructor determine what the student needs?
DSO has been designated as the college’s determining body for authorizing services and accommodations for students with disabilities. The DSO staff includes Rehabilitation Specialists experienced in evaluating medical and psychological documentation for a variety of disabilities and matching the students’ needs with available technology, personnel and services. Disability Services is also able to ensure that consistent services are provided to all students.
What is the list of services and accommodations provided?
DSO offers a variety of individualized classroom accommodations based on documentation of need. Services may include:
However, all accommodations are determined on an individual basis depending on type and current status of disabling condition, onset of the disability, student expertise in utilizing assistive technology, fundamental nature of the course and physical environment of the classroom.
Whose responsibility is it to provide accommodations to students with disabilities?
While the Disability Services Office is in place to authorize accommodations, faculty members have the “bottom-line” responsibility for ensuring their course is accessible to all students. DSO is available as a resource in identifying options and solutions to access issues.
May faculty refer students to Disability Services?
Yes, any Eastfield employee may refer individuals to the DSO. However, not all students experiencing academic difficulties have disabilities. Therefore, faculty members should refrain from suggesting a diagnosis or labeling the student with a disability. While the college does not provide diagnostic testing, DSO acts as a referral source to outside agencies which may be able to provide testing and documentation of need.
How do I provide double time on exams for my online class?
-Providing Extended Time for Exams in Blackboard 9.1
Many students registered with the DSO have access to extended time on in-class and web-based exams as an accommodation. A separate test can be created for each student who needs access to extended time on exams and quizzes.
To create a duplicate exam in Blackboard 9.1, you need to first create a copy of the exam using the “Test, Surveys, and Pools” tool. The duplicate exam must then be deployed in the course with Adaptive Release applied, so that only specific students can access it.
Step 1: Create a copy of exam