The Office of Accessibility Services (OAS) provides and facilitates reasonable accommodations for students with qualifying disabilities or disabling health conditions. To be eligible for accommodations, a student must have a disability that substantially limits at least one major life activity. Accommodations may intersect with the academic, dining, and residential dimensions of the College.
This summer, OAS became a part of the Division of Inclusive Diversity, Equity, Access, and Accountability (IDEAA), reporting to Michael Dunn. Diana Boros and Liza Gijanto are the faculty advisors for academic accessibility.
OAS is committed to providing reasonable accommodations to ensure that students have access to their education — and to working with instructors to make sure this process is as transparent, responsive, and supportive as possible.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is an accommodation?
Accommodations are a means to provide access, but do not guarantee success. It’s up to the student to use their skills and strategies to be successful.
The most common accommodations granted on our campus are:
- Permission to audio-record lectures
- Extended time to complete tests, quizzes, etc.
- Use of a computer text-to-speech software
- Provision of copies of outlines
- Testing in an alternate, quiet space
How does OAS determine which accommodations may be appropriate?
How will I know if any of my students receive accommodations?
A student’s accommodations in a course are active from the date you receive their official letter. Accommodations are not retroactive to the start of the semester.
When can students request accommodations? Can accommodations be added or changed after the initial letter is produced?
What if I have concerns about a student’s accommodation to audio-record my class?
When are accommodations not appropriate?
- Poses a direct threat to others’ health or safety
- Creates an undue burden on the College
- Creates a fundamental alteration of College policies, practices, procedures, or academic requirements (see the next question for more information)
- Requires the provision of personal services and devices (such as personal aides, specialized tutors, or specialized personal equipment; a student may use these as needed, but the College does not provide them)
How do we determine if an accommodation presents a fundamental alteration of a course?
- A removal of an essential skill
- A lowering of an objective or standard
- A change in the essential goal or outcome of the course or assignment
- The modification of a requirement needed for a specific licensure or certification
These skills, objectives, standards, goals, outcomes, and requirements would generally be included in a course syllabus in order to be considered fundamental. A fundamental alteration would not be reflected in a tradition, absence of consideration, a failure to consider technology, or a pretext of discrimination.