How will I know if a student needs accommodations?

You will receive the Semester Accommodations Request Form (SAR) from each student requiring accommodations. The form will identify the specific accommodations for which the student is eligible. Students are encouraged to discuss their accommodation needs at the beginning of each semester.

How are testing accommodations arranged?

Students who wish to take their exams in the Center for Accessibility Resources initiate the process by contacting the test proctor, who will contact the instructor about the requested arrangements. Instructors can send the test to Center for Accessibility Resources test via email, inter-campus mail or in person. Instructors who are concerned about the integrity of their exams have the right to choose the date and time the test should be administered.

Are there other testing arrangements available to students and faculty?

Various testing accommodations can be arranged. The Center for Accessibility Resources encourages students to discuss possible ways to arrange their testing accommodation with their instructors. Most students prefer to take their test in the Center for Accessibility Resources testing room. However, faculty can arrange with students to take their test at other locations, only if the accommodation requirements are fulfilled. Students who take their test with the class have the advantage of being able to ask questions and to learn about exam changes. Please be mindful of confidentiality of the students when making such arrangements.

What if I am unable to accommodate the student?

Requested accommodations must be provided. If you have concerns about your ability to provide certain accommodations, please contact the Center for Accessibility Resources or call 651-793-1549 immediately.

May I provide accommodations to a student who is not registered with Center for Accessibility Resources?

If a student asks for an accommodation and you have not received an SAR form, which verifies eligibility for accommodations, please contact immediately. Faculty is strongly advised not to provide accommodations to students who do not follow university procedures for obtaining accommodations by registering with the Center for Accessibility Resources. Similarly, if a student asks you for an accommodation and that specific accommodation is not listed in the SAR, you are not obligated to provide it. If you are uncertain about your obligations, please contact the Center for Accessibility Resources.

Do I have to provide the accommodations listed in the SAR if they do not fit with my belief system or teaching style?

Yes. Federal and state mandates and Minnesota State Board policy 1B.4 requires that eligible students have equal educational opportunities. Accommodations eliminate or lessen the barriers a student's disabling condition will have on their participation in courses, activities and services offered by the university. Students who are registered with the Center for Accessibility Resources are entitled to the accommodations listed in the SAR.

Nonetheless, some accommodations do not fit with a particular course, i.e. providing a note-taker for an online or independent study course. Providing reasonable accommodations is a shared responsibility between the Center for Accessibility Resources and the faculty.

What accommodations are appropriate?

Accommodations are determined on a case-by-case basis and are based on an interactive process, which may also include documentation from an appropriate medical, mental health or other professional. The Center for Accessibility Resources determines eligibility for accommodations after a careful review of the documentation and a discussion with the student to determine which accommodations are reasonable and appropriate for the student. Faculty will be consulted on a class-by-class basis to ensure the requested accommodations do not fundamentally alter essential curriculum components.

All students, including students with disabilities, are expected to attend class and turn assignments in on time. Typically, the Center for Accessibility Resources does not allow students to be exempt from due dates or other essential components of their courses. In some instances, arrangements for due date extensions or a flexible attendance policy can be made if a student's symptoms are acute.

May I talk to students about their disability?

No. However, you are encouraged to discuss a student's accommodation needs. Some students may wish to keep specific disability information confidential, while others will openly discuss their diagnoses and all related information with you. The decision to disclose disability information is made by the student. In most cases, you can best accommodate students by asking about their needs related to learning and fulfilling the requirements of your course. Most students appreciate professors' efforts to accommodate their learning needs.

If I think a student has a disability that she/he has not disclosed, do I request the student go to the Center for Accessibility Resources?

No. Students must contact the Center for Accessibility Resources voluntarily. However, it is appropriate to refer a student to the Center for Accessibility Resources if he/she requests an accommodation or consideration due to their disability.

What if a student's behavior disrupts instruction?

All students, including students with disabilities, are expected to adhere to the university's student conduct code. If disruptive behavior occurs, the instructor should give the student fair warning. Contact the Center for Accessibility Resources if you have any other concerns.

Are there any instructional strategies I might consider to make my course more accessible?

  • Provide lecture notes in electronic format. Text in electronic form can be paired with screen-reading software, which makes printed material accessible for students with various learning disabilities, visual impairments or limited mobility. Additionally, students who qualify for use of note-takers can access electronic notes independently, instead of relying on classmates to make copies of notes.
  • Provide clear copies of handouts. When handouts are copied clearly, they can be easily scanned onto disk for use with screen-reading software.
  • Include information about obtaining accommodations on your syllabi. It is Metropolitan State University's obligation to inform students of the Center for Accessibility Resources. You might include this on your syllabi (view a Sample Syllabi).
  • Consider students' diverse abilities and learning styles when developing lectures and assignments. Any or all of your classes may include students with learning disabilities, visual or hearing disabilities, or other functional limitations or weaknesses. You can contribute to the success of your students by imagining the obstacles an assignment may present to a student who is blind or deaf.
  • For additional information please visit Center for Accessibility Resources.