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FAQs for Instructors

What is the difference between DRC and the SALT Center?

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The DRC is the office designated by the University to lead the campus in creating access for individuals with disabilities. DRC staff determines and facilitates the implementation of reasonable accommodations in consultation with students and faculty. Accommodations and services are free of charge and intended to provide access to University programs and activities for disabled individuals.

The SALT Center is a fee-based service office available to students with academic challenges intended to maximize student success.

As a faculty member or course instructor, you should contact DRC if you have questions about access for disabled students, would like assistance in administering your exams with accommodations, have questions about whether a recommended accommodation is reasonable or would like to discuss your role in assuring access to students in your classes

What is a reasonable accommodation?

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The University will provide reasonable accommodation(s) upon request to an otherwise qualified employee or student as required by law. Reasonable accommodations ensure equal access to University employment, educational opportunities, programs, services, and activities in the most integrated setting appropriate to the individual’s needs. The extent of such accommodation(s) cannot impose an undue hardship upon the University, constitute a fundamental alteration to a program, or compromise academic integrity. It is the responsibility of the students and employees to make their disability status and subsequent need for an accommodation known. Reasonable accommodations do not guarantee success, but do guarantee access.

For more information visit DRC's information on the ADA/504.

Examples of reasonable accommodations

How does DRC determine eligibility for reasonable accommodation?

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Student eligibility for accommodation is an individual process that is determined with information on disability (from formal documentation and from the student) and the assessment of the classroom environment. The University need not provide any particular accommodation, but will provide a reasonable accommodation, when appropriate.

What accommodations do students use?

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The most common accommodations are extended test time, note-taking and document conversion services. However, students may make requests for many other accommodations, including Sign Language interpreting, CART writers, assistive technology, and accessible transportation.  Each student’s request for accommodation is addressed individually and determined in consultation with the DRC. Accommodations for the students in your courses can be viewed through UAccess.

How do I know if students in my class use accommodations?

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The University has an on-line process for informing faculty that students are registered with the DRC and may use accommodations.  You can access this information via a DRC link on your UAccess Instructor Center. You can check this site prior to the beginning of the semester to know if you will have students who might use accommodations or to welcome them in a brief email that demonstrates your interest in ensuring access.
**Students decide whether they will identify through this process.  If they don't plan to use accommodations in your course, they may or may not choose to be included on the list you see.

Since not all identified students use accommodations, how will I know which students will?

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If a student chooses to use an accommodation, either the student or the DRC will contact you with more information. Your involvement in implementing accommodations is usually required.  For example, if your student requests test accommodations, you will either need to ensure appropriate testing or support DRC staff in administering your at our facility.

Why wouldn't students use the accommodations that the DRC says are available to them?

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Most disabled students prefer to have the same academic experience as their peers.   It can be embarrassing to ask for different treatment, and student report feeling their instructors think they are less capable if they use accommodations. The desire for a similar experience means students may experiment at the beginning of the semester, taking a test without accommodations or taking their own notes to see if they will be successful.  They will then only request accommodations when their general access or ability to demonstrate their learning is negatively impacted by the course design or requirements.

If you’ve designed your course in ways that incorporates flexibility and supports for all students, you may find that fewer of your students need to use accommodations.  For example, if you grade students based on take-home exams or projects, they will not need to request test accommodations, and if you post class notes to a Website, note-taking as an accommodation won’t be necessary.

Why doesn't DRC tell me the student's disability?

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Information about the specifics of a disabling condition is personal and treated as confidential by the University.  However, to participate in ensuring that accommodations are effective, you need to know what accommodations have been determined to be reasonable. If you have specific questions about a student, please contact DRC.