Faculty Guide For Student Accommodations

Click on the titles below to expand information to read about the guidelines.

What kinds of disabilities are served by the Accessibility Services Office (AS)?

All disabilities are served, including those that are hidden.  Hidden disabilities may include learning, medical, physical, emotional and psychiatric.  They may be continuous, intermittent, or temporary.

Who is eligible for services?

Any student of Louisburg College who has a documented disability is eligible for services. 

What is an accommodation?

A reasonable accommodation is a modification or adjustment to a course, program, service, activity, or facility that enables a qualified student with a disability to have an equal opportunity to attain the same level of performance or enjoy equal benefits and privileges as are available to similarly situated students without disabilities. 

Why do I have to provide academic accommodations?

This a responsibility in compliance with Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA), and the ADA Amendments Act of 2008, as well as a part of our central purpose as a small college committed to offering an individualized approach to higher education.

The Rehabilitation Act states that “no otherwise qualified handicapped individual…shall, solely by means of handicap be excluded from the participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving federal financial assistance.”  With the passage of the ADA, this mandate was expanded to any public or private institution.  Subpart E of the Rehabilitation Act requires an institution to be prepared to make reasonable academic  accommodations to allow students with disabilities full access to the same programs and activities available to students without disabilities.

What if I cannot implement a requested accommodation?

If you have a question or think you will have difficulty providing the accommodations, the first step is to contact the AS office.  The AS office will clarify any information, as well as assist you with the resources you need to provide the accommodations.

Why is “extended time on test” recommended so often?

Students have a variety of disabilities, but extended test time is the accommodation most common because many disabilities affect processing time. Therefore, a student may need additional time to rephrase the questions in a way he/she can understand and answer.  A student with a disability affecting motor control may need additional time to write the answers.  Accommodations allow students with disabilities to demonstrate their abilities, not the limitations of their disabilities.

As a faculty member, can I know specific information about a student’s disability?

The AS office cannot release information about a student unless the student signs a release for the exchange of information.

What if I suspect a student in my class has a disability and would benefit from accommodations, but I do not think he/she is working with the AS office?

Many referrals to the AS are from faculty members who have noticed a student having difficulty in class.  If you see a student struggling and suspect a disability, you are encouraged to contact AS, and the office will help develop an appropriate strategy for approaching the student about the difficulty the student is experiencing.


Adapted from Meredith College’s Disability Services Handbook

After a thorough examination of the required documentation, Accessibility Services (AS) determines appropriate accommodation(s), which may include the following:  

  • Extended Time (time and a half): 

Faculty members make arrangements privately with the student for options that may include asking the student to come to class before the test/quiz is scheduled to begin, asking the student to stay after the test is scheduled to end, or reserving a space within the department (such as a conference room or office).

  • Note Taker: 

Faculty member may provide his/her notes directly to the student or may choose a volunteer note taker for the class. To maintain confidentiality, do not identify the student with disabilities to the student note taker. The student note taker should take their notes to the administrative assistant of AS in Taft 107 where the student with disabilities can pick up their copy of the notes.

  • Separate Setting: 

A quiet space (classroom, office, conference room) free from distractions such as phones or conversations.

  • Read Aloud: 

Test is read aloud by faculty member or via assistive technology.

  • Scribe: 

Test answers are transcribed by a faculty member or via assistive technology (speech-to-text).

  • Electronic Textbooks: 

Provided by the Office of Accessibility Services.

  • Digital Recorder:  

a cell phone or other recording device is used to record the classroom instruction for future reference.

  • Preferential Seating: 

student sits in an area, usually at the front, where there is less potential for distraction and more potential for focus/attentiveness.

  • Spell Check: 

student uses spell check function on computer for assignments and tests.

  • Word Processor: 

in classroom, student uses personal computer or one provided by professor.

  • The student provides to the AS Director documentation of disability and the impact of that disability from an appropriate licensed/certified professional.
  • After a review of the documentation and meeting with the student, the Director of AS makes a determination of eligibility for accommodations.
  • Once that determination is made, the student signs a release allowing AS to inform instructors of accommodations.
  • AS sends a letter to instructors, with a copy to the student, of the approved accommodations.
  • The student is instructed to discuss with each instructor how the accommodations will be implemented in each specific course.
  • Faculty members are responsible for proctoring tests for their students and providing other approved accommodations.
  • It is the student’s responsibility to request accommodations at least two days prior to the date of the test.  If accommodations are requested after this deadline, providing them is at the discretion of the provider.
  • For legal purposes, it is suggested that instructors keep a record for each student with the date and accommodations provided.
  • Remember that the student’s identity, along with other disability-related information, is to be kept strictly confidential.
  • If you need assistance or have questions, please contact the Director of AS.
  • Distraction-free Tests & Quizzes in the Classroom: 

           This includes you!  Students are distracted by the talking of their professors. 

  • Confidentiality: 

With instructor-proctored tests, how are you maintaining confidentiality within the        proctoring process? Students only give permission for their professor to know about their requests for disability accommodations; permission does NOT extend to other faculty members or to other students.

  • Assistive technology: 

Google Read & Write is available to all LC students and faculty.  R&W is a good resource for instruction and for providing test accommodations.

  • Tracking the process: 
    • Do you have a method for keeping all of the accommodations letters together so that you can easily see which students need which accommodations?
    • Are you keeping notes on what you did, when, and for whom? 
  • How are you creating a welcoming environment for students? 
    • Do you have a statement on your syllabi?
    • Do you make a verbal statement welcoming students and inviting them to meet with you privately if they have specific learning needs?
  • How are you helping students get notes if they have that as a part of their accommodations plan, keeping confidentiality in mind?
  • How are you allowing access to a computer if a student has that listed as an accommodation for in-class assignments and on tests?
  • How are you handling quizzes when a student needs extra time, including pop quizzes?
Accommodations for students with disabilities are best arranged when there is sufficient time for planning and problem-solving.  However, because of the stigma associated with disabilities, students often find it difficult to bring up the subject of accommodations.  As a course instructor, you can facilitate early planning by encouraging students with disabilities to disclose their condition to you and begin the discussion of what accommodations might be needed.  A good way of encouraging such discussion would be to include a statement in your syllabus that announces your willingness to talk about accommodations with students who may need them.  The Accessibility Services Office (AS) encourages the following statement for your syllabus:

Louisburg College is an equal opportunity provider. If you have a documented disability -- physical, psychological, or learning -- you may be eligible to receive reasonable accommodations in college. Students requesting accommodations should contact the Accessibility Services offices in Taft 107 or 111 within the first two weeks of the semester. Please note that using your accommodations can significantly and positively influence your success in college.

Such announcements help set a tone of acceptance of differences and of a willingness to make your course accessible to everyone.  Reinforcing this information verbally during class time will provide additional emphasis and reassurance to students.

Students with disabilities must provide appropriate disability documentation in order to receive accommodations.  Generally, this documentation is provided to the Accessibility Services Office (AS) and remains confidential until the student gives permission for our office to release information.  As an instructor, if asked to make disability-related accommodations, you are entitled to know that the student has provided documentation and what the functional limitations are for that particular student.  We do not provide details of the specific diagnoses or history of a condition unless requested to do so by the student.  If a student requesting accommodations is not using our office, please encourage him/her to do so.  Contact the AS office at any time to consult about a request that has been made and to identify reasonable accommodations.  

Accessibility Services (AS) provides assistive technology designed to support the learning of students with a variety of needs.

Google Read & Write 

Read & Write for Google Chrome offers a range of powerful support tools to help students gain confidence with reading, writing, studying, and research, including:

  • Hear words, passages, or whole documents read aloud with easy-to-follow dual color highlighting
  • See the meaning of words explained with text and picture dictionaries
  • Hear text translated into other languages
  • Get suggestions for the current or next word as you type
  • Turn words into the text as you speak
  • Highlight text in documents or the web, and collect this text for use in other documents
  • Create and listen to voice notes directly inside of google docs
  • Simplify and summarize text on web pages

Read & Write for Google Chrome is a user-friendly chrome extension for use with PCs, Macs, and Chromebooks.  It works with web pages and common file types in Google Drive.  The toolbar is available for all students with a louisburg.edu account.

Download the toolbar


Electronic Textbooks

For students who have a print disability, e-textbooks are available and may be requested through the AS administrative assistant. 


Digital Recorders

Available for students to check out.

Accessibility Services is a free service available to all students with a documented disability, provided in compliance with federal and state legislation. Students in the Learning Partners program are also served through Accessibility Services, but choose to participate additionally in a fee-based academic coaching program.


Same:  

  • Disability documentation required
  • Accommodations provided 

Different:

  • LP students have a Learning Specialist with whom they meet twice per week for academic coaching and advising
  • LP students may take their tests with accommodations in the LP Test Center 
  • LP students have a Learning Lab available for their study time and academic support (Taft 108 and 110)

LP welcomes collaboration between Learning Specialists and students’ instructors.  LP works to support the classroom instructional process.


Learning Partners Test Center 

  • The student completes an electronic test proctoring form with the LP administrative assistant (Taft 107) 2 days prior to the scheduled exam, which allows time for LP and the instructor to coordinate test materials.  If the student fails to do so, the student may test with the instructor, accommodations being provided by the instructor as with any student who has approved accommodations through Accessibility Services.
  • Form requesting that student test in LP Test Center is sent to the instructor, who indicates approval of the time and date requested, any special instructions, the method of delivery, and the method of the test return.
  • Proctored test time is scheduled for the same time as the class for which the student is taking the exam, with two exceptions:
    • The test proctor is unavailable to proctor the exam at that time.
    • The student has another class immediately prior to or following the exam that would not allow the student to use the appropriate accommodations (e.g., extended time for testing).
  • The instructor provides the exam to the administrative assistant in Taft 107 no later than 8:30 a.m. on the day of the test. The administrative assistant keeps the exam until the scheduled proctoring time, always maintaining test security.
  • On the exam day, the student should arrive promptly at the designated time to Taft 107.  If the student does not arrive within 15 minutes of the scheduled test time, the test will be returned to the instructor. 
  • When testing, the student will take only permitted materials into the testing room. Items not allowed are cell phones, notebooks, book bags, purses, oversized jackets, etc. Personal items may be placed in the office of the learning specialist or administrative assistant.
  • Students are not provided “as much time as needed” for tests/exams unless all the students in the class are provided this option. The student is provided extended time as noted on the accommodations letter.
  • The Read-Aloud accommodation is typically provided through assistive technology. 
  • When the test is completed or the time has ended, the student will turn in all materials to the test proctor.
  • The administrative assistant will return the test to the instructor according to the preferred method of return as indicated by the instructor.  A test that had been sent electronically will be deleted.

Learning Partners Mission 

To provide students the individualized support and coaching they need to develop their learning skills, realize their academic goals, and work towards becoming successful independent learners.


Learning Outcomes: 

  • Realize Educational or Career Objectives
  • Become Proactive Self-advocates 
  • Achieve Personal Learning Goals
  • Develop Personally and Engage Socially

Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

A person diagnosed with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (AD/HD) has difficulty focusing and concentrating on complex tasks.  There are three types of AD/HD: combined type, predominantly inattentive type, and predominantly hyperactive-impulsive type.   AD/HD is characterized by inattention and distractibility, and in the case of the predominantly hyperactive-impulsive type, restlessness or an increased energy level.  These individuals describe their experience as similar to having a conversation with a friend while a TV and radio are also on.  It takes a great deal of energy and determination for individuals with AD/HD to stay focused, particularly in situations that require sustained mental effort or lack novelty.

Treatment may include medication.


Accommodations for the student with AD/HD may include, but are not limited to:

  • Preferential seating location
  • Use of note-taker or digital recorder
  • Extended test time
  • Separate setting
  • Written and oral directions and deadlines

Suggestions for working with students:

  • A student with AD/HD benefits from structure and organization.   When possible, provide outlines of major topics to be covered before each lecture.  A detailed syllabus can be helpful. 
  • Provide directions for assignments in writing.
  • Provide a copy of your lecture notes or a classmate’s notes
  • Allow the student to take a photo of notes written on the board
  • Provide students feedback about their level of participation in the class.
  • Visual aids and demonstrations may be helpful in keeping the student’s attention.
  • The student with AD/HD may need assistance in setting mini-deadlines for large projects.

Learning Disorders:

A specific learning disorder is a neurodevelopmental disorder that begins during school-age although it may not be recognized until adulthood. Learning disability refers to ongoing problems in one of three areas, reading, writing, and math, which are foundational to one’s ability to learn.

An estimated 5 to 15 percent of school-age children struggle with a learning disability. An estimated 80 percent of those with learning disorders have a reading disorder in particular. One-third of people with learning disabilities are estimated to also have attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Individuals with learning disabilities may have difficulty in the following areas:

  • Reading (inaccurate, slow, and only with much effort)
  • Understanding the meaning of what is read
  • Spelling
  • Written expression (problems with clarity of thought, grammar, punctuation, or organization)
  • Understanding number concepts, number facts, or calculation
  • Mathematical reasoning (applying math concepts or solving math problems)
     

American Psychiatric Association

How Learning Disabilities May Affect Students In College

Study Skills 

  • Inability to organize and budget time effectively
  • Inability to take notes/outline material effectively
  • Inability to understand or follow directions effectively
  • Inability to complete assignments on time

Writing Skills 

  • Frequent spelling errors
  • Incorrect grammar
  • Poor penmanship
  • Poor sentence structure
  • Inability to take notes effectively while listening to class lectures
  • Problems with organization, development of ideas, and transition words

Oral Language 

  • Inability to understand oral language effectively when a lecturer speaks quickly
  • Inability to attend long lectures
  • Poor vocabulary and word recall
  • Problems with correct grammar
  • Inability to remember effectively a series of events in sequence
  • Inability to pronounce multisyllabic words

Reading Skills 

  • Slow reading rate
  • Inaccurate comprehension
  • Poor retention
  • Poor tracking skills (skips words, loses place, misses lines)
  • Difficulty with complex syntax 
  • Incomplete mastery of phonics

Math Skills 

  • Difficulty with computational skills
  • Difficulty with reasoning
  • Difficulty with basic math operations
  • Number reversals/confusion of symbols
  • Difficulty copying problems
  • Difficulty with concepts of time and money

Social Skills 

  • Spatial disorientation    
  • Low frustration level
  • Difficulty with delaying problem resolution
  • Impulsivity
  • Disorientation in time 
  • Low self-esteem


Psychological Disability Conditions 

Individuals with disabilities, including individuals with anxiety disorders and other psychological disorders, are eligible for accommodations.  Licensed psychologists and psychiatrists may assess a student as having a psychological disorder and may recommend accommodations.  The AS Office will work with the student and faculty to consider accommodations for the classroom as appropriate.  

Hearing Impairments

Hearing impairments are often hidden disabilities that range from mild hearing loss to deafness.  Students with severe hearing loss may use American Sign Language interpreters or Cued Speech transliterators.  Some students read lips and rely on seeing the speaker.  A hearing aid may help some individuals hear and understand speech, but the hearing aid will never restore hearing to normal.  Certain kinds of hearing losses may create a distortion of sounds as well as a reduction in loudness.  Classrooms typically have considerable background noise that increases the difficulty for students with hearing impairments.


Accommodations for students with hearing impairments may include, but are not limited to:

  • Sign language interpreter or cued speech transliterator
  • Note-taker
  • Digitally recorded lectures 
  • Instructors using a lapel microphone for an assistive listening device (for example, an FM system)
  • Preferential seating
  • Handout identifying “new” terms
  • Visual aids
  • Lectures with written outlines or notes on the board

The Classroom:

  • The interpreter should sit where both the interpreter and the instructor can be seen by the student simultaneously.
  • The student needs a seat in the front of the classroom where the instructor, board, and screen can be seen clearly.
  • For a student who reads lips, the instructor should face the class and speak clearly in a normal fashion.  
  • A student with a hearing impairment is better able to participate in group discussions if the class sits in a circle.
  • Avoid turning your back to the student when speaking.
  • Avoid standing with your back to a window or other light source, which puts your face in a shadow and makes it difficult to speech read.
  • When showing a video, ensure that it is captioned. 
  • Repeat questions or comments made by others in the room.
  • Do not block your mouth with hands or other objects.
  • Keep background noise to a minimum.  Environmental/background sounds tend to mask speech.
  • Use visual aids whenever possible.
  • When referring to items on the board, try to be specific about the word or phrase you’re referring to by pointing directly to it.

Visual Impairments


Students with visual impairments may have vision ranging from blindness to low vision.  A student with low vision may read materials in large print.  A student who is blind has no functional vision and may rely upon mobility devices such as a cane or guide dog.  Students with visual impairments may use paid or volunteer readers or assistive technology devices.


Accommodations for visually impaired students may include, but are not limited to: 

  • Preferential seating
  • Recorded lectures
  • Recorded texts
  • Large print materials
  • Alternate test format: oral, Braille, or large print
  • Use of voice dictation or a computer for enlarging text
  • Use of scribe or note taker
  • Extended time and alternate locations for exams
  • Extended time for research requirements

The Classroom

  • Some students use a service animal.  Guide dogs are highly trained and disciplined workers, not pets, and should not be distracted from their duties.  
  • Clear pathways of obstructions.
  • Inform the student if the furniture has been rearranged.
  • When offering a seat to a student, place the student’s hand on the back or arm of the seat, and allow the student to seat himself or herself.
  • Clearly and precisely, read aloud anything written on the board.
  • Use precise, descriptive language.  Do not use “this and that” phrases.  For example, “the lungs are located here and diaphragm there.” 
  • Ensure that documents, whether printed or online, are provided in a format that is accessible to a screen reader.  Document accessibility includes a number of factors (font type, size, format, color contrast, etc.), which AS can assist you with.
  • Provide enlarged copies of material or work with the AS office for Braille materials when appropriate.  
  • Identify yourself when talking with the student and let the individual know when a conversation is finished.  A student with visual impairments cannot always depend on recognizing a voice in knowing with whom he or she is talking and does not always realize when a person has walked away and ended a conversation.  

Mobility Impairments


A mobility or motor impairment is defined as a partial or total loss of the function of a body part, usually a limb or limbs.  This may result in weakness, poor stamina, lack of muscle control, or total paralysis.  A student with a mobility impairment may use a wheelchair, cane, or crutches, or simply walk at a slower pace.  Motor impairments range from very visible conditions to less obvious ones such as a chronic back disorder.


The need for adaptation varies among students with mobility impairments.  Therefore, the student should be consulted regarding the areas and extent of adaptation needed for him or her.  There are, however, some general considerations that apply to most students with mobility impairments.


Accommodations for students with mobility impairments may include, but are not limited to: 

  • Relocating classes to more accessible locations
  • Providing space among the desks for a wheelchair or a wheelchair accessible desk/table
  • Accommodating seating arrangements as needed 
  • Providing advance notice if the class activity will be held elsewhere
  • Reducing the writing load through the use of handouts, a note-taker, or digital recorder
  • Providing consideration for lateness due to difficulties in the location of the classroom or schedule
  • Extending the time for tests
  • Using a computer for written work
  • Using a scribe or assistive technology for tests
  • Allowing recorded test responses 
  • Providing instructor’s notes when appropriate and copies of powerpoints to reduce the need for writing

Suggestions: 

  • Do not assume that students with motor impairments cannot participate in an activity; always consult with the student regarding limitations.
  • Incorporate the student into group activities.  This may include adaptive equipment or pairing the student with another classmate.
  • Keep aisles free of obstacles.
  • Work with AS and Facilities Services regarding equipment or furniture that may need modification (e.g., lab counters, sinks, storage shelves).
  • Consider accessibility needs when planning field trips, fieldwork, and other types of activities. 

Acquiring Information 

  • Provide a detailed course syllabus, clearly defined course requirements, and exam/assignment dates
  • Provide clearly written materials
  • Provide illustrations, handouts, and visual aids
  • Team a skilled reader with a less skilled reader
  • Vary instruction modes; use more than one method to demonstrate or explain information
  • Allow students to record lectures

Expressing Information 

  • Provide alternative ways for students to complete a task (such as an oral presentation)
  • Stress organization and ideas rather than mechanics when grading spontaneous writing assignments
  • Allow use of word processing, spell check, and grammar check software
  • Make provisions for writing revisions (give feedback so that a student may continue in a better direction)
  • Have students represent ideas as a work of art such as a sketch, painting, sculpture, or collage
  • Stimulate ideas by presenting photos, artwork, film, and video

Applying Information 

  • Break information into small steps if teaching many new tasks in one lesson (include objectives, review of the previous lesson, and summary)
  • Allow time for feedback and clarification (interpretation) of directions and essential information
  • When teaching a new task, relate the concept to a similar task or procedure already learned
  • Repeat or give additional examples of instructions
  • Provide advance notice of changes in assignments or test dates
  • Provide extended time (tests and assignments) when necessary
  • Provide study guides or review sheets for exams

Adapted from “From Screening to Accommodation:  Providing Services to Adults with Learning Disabilities”

DO 

  • Ask questions if you do not understand something or you are not sure how to proceed.
  • Hold up your end with regard to accommodations.  
  • Treat students with disabilities with the same courtesies you would afford to other students.
  • Respect the privacy of students with disabilities.  They need not disclose their disability to fellow students.  While they must disclose their disability to the AS office in order to access accommodations, this does not include disclosure to everyone.
  • Raise appropriate questions.  Questions may lead to the college’s addressing certain types of requests more consistently and more thoroughly in the future.
  • Assist students in the following procedures.  All requests for accommodations must be lodged with the AS office and not individual faculty members.  This process protects students, faculty, and the institution by ensuring consistency and takes much of the burden off individual faculty members.

DO NOT

  • Engage in philosophical debates about “fairness” to other, nondisabled students or whether providing accommodations somehow violates your academic freedom.   Congress has determined how we, as a society, should address equal access to education bypassing federal civil rights statutes protecting the rights of persons with disabilities without adversely impacting those without disabilities.  Congress has been joined in this effort by most state legislatures as well.  Secondly, academic freedom is not preemptive of federal civil rights statutes.  
  • Decide not to provide the academic accommodations which have been approved by the AS office.  You may subject the college and yourself to liability.
  • Leave a student adrift without accommodations.  For example, if no volunteers are willing to take notes in a class, make sure the AS director knows.
  • Refuse to permit students to digitally record lectures as an accommodation.  Any general policy which might permit instructors to refuse the use of digital recorders, without providing for the use by students with disabilities, is legally insufficient.  
  • Refuse to provide extended time for tests on the mistaken assumption that doing so would require that all students be given additional time.
  • Refuse to provide accommodations until you have personally evaluated a student’s documentation of disability.  Eligibility for services under the ADA is the job of the disability services personnel, not the faculty.  
  • Make assumptions about a student’s ability to work in a particular field.  Most often, concerns that students may not be able to handle the work are based on fears and assumptions, not facts.
  • Provide unrequested or unauthorized accommodations.  Forward students with unauthorized accommodations requests to the AS office.