An environment that is universally designed for learning shows students there are multiple ways to be successful.
Inclusion and Access in your classroom begin when you are first creating your course.
Faculty play an important role in ensuring that all individuals, including those with disabilities, have access to course content and instructional activities. Participation in lectures, written assignments, field or lab work, exams, class discussions, and computer applications may be impacted by an individual's disability. There are accessible structures and an accessible framework you can create in your classrooms that can enable all students to learn better, including those with disabilities.
The structures that create accessible classrooms also create inclusive classrooms where all students learn better. One example of this is making it known that you are attentive to delivering accommodations by inviting students to make an appointment with you to discuss accommodations; this shows an openness to all students about your willingness to help.
Students requesting academic accommodations because of learning challenges associated with their protected disability will present appropriate documentation to support academic accommodation to Student Accessibility Services. Student Accessibility Services, in consulation with individual students, will determine appropriate accommodations to mitigate barriers to access in the learning environment. You will receive a Letter of Accommodation via email outlining a student's approved accommodations.
If, after reviewing a Letter of Accommodation, you believe additional information is necessary or if you believe that any of the accommodations listed would fundamentally alter the nature of your course or academic program, please contact Student Accessibility Services so that we can schedule a meeting to discuss your concerns.
Accommodation Policies and Procedures
To do before the 1st day of classes:
- Make sure your textbooks are available in alternative format before you choose your
textbooks and other reading material.
Accessible Course Material
Green* Yellow* Red* AccessText Network RedShelf Learning Ally Bookshare VitalSource Open Library Project Gutenberg CIDI Louis National Library Service
*Green - likely readily available
*Yellow - may be available with extra steps, sometimes extensive and/or costly
*Red - not likely available
- Design your course so that students can engage, learn and demonstrate the learning objectives of the course in multiple ways.See also "Plus-One" Thinking: A Framework for Inclusive Teaching
- Use Moodle as your main portal for all class information and accessible materials.
- Make sure you have an updated ADA Statement with the correct contact information.
Suggested language for your syllabus under the Student Accessibility section:
Juniata College is committed to providing equitable access for learning opportunities to students. Students with disabilities are protected under the Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504. In addition, your experience in this course is important to me, and I am dedicated to removing barriers and creating a more accessible classroom environment. If you are already affiliated with Student Accessibility Services (and have been determined eligible to receive accommodations), I encourage you to confirm that I have received a copy of your accommodation letter and schedule a time for us to meet to discuss your need in this course. Although it is preferable to request before the semester begins, requests can be made at any time but are not retroactive. Any student who feels they may need an accommodation based on a documented medical condition, physical disability, mental health diagnosis or learning disability (or suspects they may have one), is encouraged to contact Naomi Radio, Interim Director of Student Accessibility Services at firstname.lastname@example.org or 814-641-5840. Her office location is Good Hall 218. You are also welcome to contact me if you have additional questions regarding Student Accessibility Services and classroom accommodations.
Please refer to the Provost's Syllabus Guidelines for more information.
- Review the Guidelines for Flexibility Accommodation and complete a Course Flexibility Questionnaire if necessary.
On the First Day and Week of Classes:
- Review the syllabus and consider reading the syllabus statements aloud.
- Make a class announcement about students with accommodations emailing you with times they can meet to discuss accommodations.
- Follow up with each student letter of accommodation you receive, and invite the student to discuss the letter.
- Consider reviewing your course Moodle page in class and ensuring that all students are enrolled in the course.
- When communicating office hours and expectations around availbility, consider including directions to your office, especially if it is harder to find.
Meetings for Students with Accommodations:
- Review the student’s letter before they come see you, if possible.
- Explain areas in which you are already allowing everyone in the class the per said “accommodation.” Ex. technology used in the classroom, recording lectures, using a laptop for note-taking.
- Ask how you can help them with the other accommodations. Ex. Will the student be using the Testing Center or could you allow them extra time or separate space near your office. Do they need to let you know about their testing accommodations for every test?
- Ask them if they have noticed any other barriers in your class that may be challenging, so you can both solve the problem out together.
- Avoid asking about their specific disability. They may choose to disclose, and that’s their choice.
- If students add the course late - consider inviting them to set up a time so you can go over the syllabus and Moodle course together.
Please contact Student Accessibility Services if you have questions or if we can help regarding any appropriate arrangements for students.
Thank you for your partnership in fulfilling Juniata's collective responsibility to provide equal access to learning for our students.