Lewis & Clark College is committed to serving the needs of our students with disabilities. Ensuring equal access for all students is a collaborative effort between the Office of Student Accessibility, students, and faculty. All participants have a role in making education accessible.
Here are severalFrequently Asked Questionsto help guide faculty and staff in working with our students with disabilities.
Lewis & Clark College, as a postsecondary institution, is required to provide reasonable accommodations to students with disabilities. According to the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, Section 504 and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990, facilities, educational and co-curricular programs, campus activities and employment opportunities must be made accessible to qualified individuals with disabilities. Therefore, all faculty and teaching staff have a responsibility to ensure that each course is accessible.
The purpose of accommodations is to ensure equal access and the opportunity to participate fully in higher education, not to ensure academic success. Accommodations are provided because without them, students would not have access to all the same information and facilities as other students, and/or may not be able to demonstrate their learning of the information in your course. Provision of accommodations for documented disabilities is required by the Americans with Disabilities Act. See www.ada.gov for more information.
Students have accommodations to provide them with equal access and to allow them to fully demonstrate their learning. A student with a disability should not be graded any differently from any other student. The integrity of your course should not be compromised; the student is expected to meet the objectives of the course and to submit quality work.
Federal law requires that colleges provide reasonable accommodations for students with disabilities. However, faculty are also responsible to maintain the integrity of their course. If you believe an accommodation should be modified, it is essential that you provide it until you have discussed the matter with the Office of Student Accessibility. Do not engage the student in negotiations about accommodations.
The student has requested that our office send you their Letter so that you can be informed of their approved accommodations. This Letter is requested to be sent by our office at the beginning of each semester. We encourage students to talk with you about their learning and in regards to any accommodations they anticipate using in your class. You may let the student know that you have received the information. The student is expected to let you know if they are going to use extended time on an upcoming exam within 5-7 days of the exam date.
Did you receive an Accommodations Letter for the student? If not, ask the student if they have met with someone in the Office of Student Accessibility to document their disability and accommodations. If they have not met with anyone, please refer the student to our office.
If you have received a Letter that approves the student for exam accommodations, you may handle the request in one of two ways:
1. You may provide the accommodation (i.e. stay while the student with extended time takes their exam, relocate the student to your office or conference room near your office, etc.)
2. Student may request to take the exam in our OSA Testing Center (located under Smith Hall)
Students requesting exam accommodations are required to submit the exam request form 3-5 days before an exam.
Students who do not complete the exam request form by noon the day before an exam must take the exam with the class.
OSA exam processes are communicated to students in multiple formats including the OSA website. Faculty are key communicators. Please reach out to students in your classes with exam accommodations early in the semester to address questions or concerns.
Please contact the exam coordinator, Carolin Thompson, for more information about exam logistics (x7192, firstname.lastname@example.org).
Our office does not grant extra time on exams unless they already have approved this accommodation with our office. If you send the student to our office, we will first talk with the student about the exam/course in question and ask them about their study techniques and test-taking strategies. We will encourage the student to talk with their instructor about their difficulties. We will also talk with them about what is required for students to qualify for extra time. This would mean they would need to get tested for a learning disability. Testing costs between $600-$2000, takes six hours or longer, and can require 4-6 weeks for a resulting report with a diagnosis and/or recommendations, and does not always result in a diagnosis or recommendations that include extended time on exams.
The information a student shares with faculty about their disability is confidential information and must be treated as such, according to the Federal Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) of 1974. Avoid discussing disability issues at the front of the class or in the presence of other students. Information about a specific student’s disability should not be shared with other faculty members or staff, unless they have a legitimate educational need to know (you should consult with the Office of Student Accessibility regarding this issue). Written material about a specific student and their disability, including but not limited to the Accommodations Letter must be regarded as “confidential” material.
OSA does not conduct the make up exams for students who miss an exam due to illness, unless they already have approved accommodations with our office. The college does not have a general testing center on campus staffed for exams. Faculty are responsible for proctoring their own make up exams for students.
Starting Fall 2023, we are working on transitioning away from our traditional faculty notification system. The intent of this transition is for OSA to engage with students experiencing longer-term illness or injury that impacts class attendance and/or course completion (i.e., more than 2 weeks), as these cases may necessitate formal accommodations. In these situations, OSA will do our best to verify these needs by collecting documentation from healthcare providers. Please see [this page] (<—link there to the new page you’ll create under At A Glance) for more information, and reach out to email@example.com if you have any questions.