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Disability Services

Accommodations

 

Notetaking Services

When you receive a notification letter that states a particular student is in a particular class, it will also identify the accommodation(s) that the student has chosen to utilize for the class. This letter is for notification only, no other assistance from you is required at this time.

 

If you receive an email from ODS that a notetaker is needed in one of your classes, and you have a student(s) in that class that you feel would do a good job, please refer them to ODS. We are located in APSC 405.

 

If you don't know of a student that takes good notes, please make a general announcement that a notetaker is needed, without identifying who that student is.

 

Notetakers should be dependable, take good notes, have legible handwriting and a minimum GPA of 2.5.

 

Only one notetaker is needed per class/section. You may refer more than one student, but only one will be hired, generally it is a first come, first hired basis.

 

Notetakers are paid $20 per credit hour for the class for the term. For instance, payment for a three credit class would be $60 at the end of the term.

 

Generally, ODS does not hire notetakers for labs, although there are exceptions.

 

ODS uses the credits stated in the catalog, not the schedule of classes, for determining payment; i.e., a Biology class is broken down as 3 hours of lecture and 2 hours of lab in the catalog. Generally, we only pay for notes provided for the lecture portion of the class; i.e., $60.

 

If a student asks you to make an announcement about the need for a notetaker, please do not make an announcement unless you have received a notice from ODS that the student has been approved for ODS notetaking services. Although we do ask students to advocate for themselves, there are times that the student may not be aware that we have already located a notetaker.

 

If a student has a temporary disability, such as a broken arm, he/she would not be eligible for services from ODS, but with your permission, the student could make an announcement asking someone from the class to share their notes with them until healed. This would be totally separate from our office/services.

 

 

Alternative Testing

There are many variations to Alternative Testing for students registered at ODS and approved for Alternative Testing accommodations. Some students may receive one or more of the following accommodations....

 

1.5 times the regular amount of time

2.0 times the regular amount of time

Room Alone

Limited Distraction

Computer

Calculator

Reader

Scribe

 

Books in Alternate Format

Some students have been approved for books in Alternate Format. If you receive a notification letter that a student has requested a textbook in your class in an alternate format, ODS may contact you to see if you have an extra desk copy that ODS can borrow. ODS contacts the publisher of each book to request the text in an electronic format. ODS does this as soon as proof of purchase has been obtained by the student. Publisher responses can be sporadic, with some companies responding as quick as the same day the request was made, to several weeks later. One option for faculty to consider when deciding on purchasing texts is if there is an E-book option available for the student to purchase.

 

Some students that receive books in alternate format will also receive classroom materials in an alternate format, such as braille or audio. If you are notified of this, please work with the Accommodations Coordinator to ensure all classroom material is accessible, and what those options may look like.

 

 

Working with Interpreters

Western Oregon University is known for having a large population of Deaf and Hard of Hearing, D/HH, students on campus. This leads to the noticeable presence of interpreters in classrooms and campus events. Below are some tips and general information for working with interpreters and their responsibilities on the job. If ever you have questions regarding interpreters and the accommodation they provide, please call the Office of Disability Services at 838-8250.

 

Familiarity with subject matter will enhance the quality of the interpreted message. If possible, share class syllabii, outlines, PowerPoint slides, technical vocabulary, and any other pertinent information. These materials assist the interpreter with class content.

 

When addressing the D/HH student, look and speak directly to him/her. Avoid saying, "Tell him/her..." or "Ask him/her..."

 

Allow extra time for the D/HH student to respond. Typically interpreters are a little bit behind when interpreting the content. Providing extra time will allow the D/HH student the ability to see the question and respond.

 

Keep lines of sight free for Deaf individuals to have visual access to information. In class, the interpreter will position himself or herself in direct line with you, the student, and any visual aids.

 

There are usually two interpreters in a class. Interpreters usually switch every 20 minutes to maintain the integrity of the content.

 

Be sensitive to the fact that when the lights are completely off in the classroom, the D/HH student cannot see the interpreter.

 

Interpreters can only convey one message at a time. Turn-taking during class discussions is crucial. This allows the interpreters to relay information being shared by class participants and the professor clearly and accurately.

 

Working with Transcribers

Some students request services to access information. Transcription is "real time" access to information via English. Depending on the type of transcription service, the transcript will either be word for word verbatim or concept based. When the class or event has ended a copy of the transcript is emailed or saved to a flash drive for student use. The transcript is not shared among students. Below are some tips and scenarios that may come up in your classroom.

 

Familiarity with subject matter will enhance the quality of the transcribed message. If possible, share class syllabii, outlines, PowerPoint slides, technical vocabulary, and any other pertinent information. These materials assist the transcriber with content.

 

Transcribers capture all comments in class from professor and students. Turn-taking during class discussions is crucial. This allows the the transcribers to relay information being shared by class participants and the professor clearly and accurately.

 

An extra seat(s) will be needed for the transcriber(s). This is usually provided by ODS, however some classrooms have extra chairs to use.

 

Equipment - there will be two laptops, one for the transcriber and one for the student, there may be a need for an extension cord and also a steno stand.

 

Depending on the length of the class, two transcribers may be present.

 

The transcriber may ask for clarification from the professor if they get behind. Please repeat content if that happens.

 

Transcribers are non-participants in class.

 

ADA Furniture

ODS places furniture throughout campus in classrooms and at different venues to provide an accommodations for students that have provided ODS documentation that the furniture is a disability-related need.

 

Tables and chairs are placed in classes for student use by ODS. These tables and chairs are different than what is normally found in classrooms. Many times chairs are padded and resemble furniture that would be found in an office rather than a classroom. ODS also provides furniture for transcribers and interpreters if needed.

 

If you are a faculty or staff member and need ADA furniture for a classroom, please contact Human Resources.

 

 

Captioning of Videos (video, DVD, YouTube..)

In order to ensure access to instructional materials, all media must be captioned when being shown in classes in which students who are deaf/hard of hearing are enrolled. If you receive an email from the Office of Disability Services (ODS) alerting you that a student in your class is eligible for captioned media, please email the Office of Disability Services at odscaptioning@wou.edu as soon as possible. ODS will add captions to a copy of the media that you will use, but the process is time-intensive and generally requires a minimum of two weeks to complete a one hour video/DVD.

 

Information that you will be asked to provide:

* The title of the video/DVD

* The length of the video/DVD

* Whether the video/DVD is closed captioned or subtitled

* The owner of the video/DVD (private party, department, Hamersly Library collection, etc.)

* The anticipated show date for the video/DVD

* The link for any YouTube clips you plan to use

 

ODS staff will make arrangements with you to pick up the video/DVD from your specified location and return the original to you, generally within 48 hours. ODS will make every effort to have the captioned media available to you before your planned show date.

 

Flexibility with Assignments

If the student needs special consideration in meeting deadlines for assignments and tests, the student will notify the faculty of any period of illness or inability to complete deadlines before the due date. The student will make arrangements with the faculty regarding completing the required course work.  The student understands that he/she will need to work with the faculty to determine the new due date and that the request for an extension must be made in advance of the due date. The student should not incur any late grading penalties, if arrangements were established in advance.

Faculty Notification Letter
If the student is eligible for the above accommodations, the faculty notification letter will contain the following:

"Student's disability might impact class attendance. It is estimated that this will not exceed 30% of the term. The Student-Instructor Agreement should be completed and noted if more than 70% attendance is required due to the structure of the class. It is student's responsibility to inform you (the instructor) of his/her absence in a timely manner (i.e., before class), and to clarify with you the methods and timelines for making up assignments missed due to the absence from class (i.e., make up tests and quizzes, timeline for handing in work that was to have been handed in during the class period, etc.)."

 

 

Flexibility with Attendance

If attendance is required, then it must be determined how much attendance is essential or the maximum time that can be missed before compromising the integrity of the course/program. The number of allowable absences depends on the interactive or participatory nature of a course, or is based on accrediting agency rules.  In most cases, faculty will require a minimum of 70% class attendance.  Again, depending on the nature of the class (labs, graduate level, group projects, etc.) faculty may require 80% to 90% class attendance. 

 

How to Determine if Attendance if Essential to the Course:

A 1996 Office of Civil Rights case gave the following factors to be considered when determining if attendance is essential to the course:

  1. What does the course description and syllabus say about attendance?
  2. Is attendance factored in as part of the final course grade?
  3. What are classroom practices and policies regarding attendance?
  4. Is the attendance policy consistently applied?
  5. Have exceptions been made for extenuating circumstances other than disability?
  6. Is there classroom interaction between the instructor and students or is group work required for the class?
  7. Do student contributions constitute a significant component of the learning process?
  8. Does the course rely on student participation as a method for learning?
  9. What is the impact on the educational experience of other students in the class?

When is it Appropriate to Have Flexibility with Attendance?

When a student has a chronic condition with random or cyclical acute episodes, accommodations to attendance policies may be appropriate.

Flexibility with Assignments

If the student needs special consideration in meeting deadlines for assignments and tests, the student will notify the faculty of any period of illness or inability to complete deadlines before the due date. The student will make arrangements with the faculty regarding completing the required course work.  The student understands that he/she will need to work with the faculty to determine the new due date and that the request for an extension must be made in advance of the due date. The student should not incur any late grading penalties. 

Faculty Notification Letter
If the student is eligible for the above accommodations, the faculty notification letter will contain the following:

"Student's disability might impact class attendance. It is estimated that this will not exceed 30% of the term. The Student-Instructor Agreement should be completed and noted if more than 70% attendance is required due to the structure of the class. It is student's responsibility to inform you (the instructor) of his/her absence in a timely manner (i.e., before class), and to clarify with you the methods and timelines for making up assignments missed due to the absence from class (i.e., make up tests and quizzes, timeline for handing in work that was to have been handed in during the class period, etc.)."

 

 

Contact

Office of Disability Services (503) 838-8250 VTTY; fax (503) 838-8721 | or e-mail: ods@wou.edu
Location: APSC room 405

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