Ten Informational Factors to Guide Faculty/Staff in Assisting with Students with Disabilities
Equal educational opportunity
Providing an equal educational opportunity is an important and shared responsibility at MSU Denver. The Access Center assists students with disabilities to reach their academic potential, by recommending, facilitating, and/or providing qualified students with disabilities reasonable academic accommodations as mandated under ADA and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act.
ADA Syllabus Statement
Students have the responsibility for making their disability-related accommodation needs known to you. However, they did not have this responsibility in K-12 schools and many students may not be aware of the change as they transition to higher education. You should inform students by including a statement on your syllabus that invites students with disabilities to meet with you to discuss their needs. The following is the institution's approved syllabus statement:
Metropolitan State University of Denver is committed to making reasonable accommodations to assist individuals with disabilities in reaching their academic potential. If you have a disability which may impact your performance, attendance, or grades in this class and are requesting accommodations, then you must first register with the Access Center, located in the Plaza Building, Suite 122, 303-615-0200.
The Access Center is the designated department responsible for coordinating accommodations and services for students with disabilities. Accommodations will not be granted prior to my receipt of your faculty notification letter from the Access Center. Please note that accommodations are never provided retroactively (i.e., prior to the receipt of your faculty notification letter.) Once I am in receipt of your official Access Center faculty accommodation letter, I would be happy to meet with you to discuss your accommodations. All discussions will remain confidential. Further information is available by visiting the Access center website www.msudenver.edu/access.
Students with disabilities are expected to meet the same academic rigors as their peers. Faculty members should never lower their academic standards for a student with a disability.
Academic accommodations are intended to provide equal access and the opportunity to benefit from all educational programs, but they do not guarantee academic success. Examples of accommodations that are commonly recommended include: extra time on exams, peer note-takers, accessible print material and sign language interpreters.
Accessible Course Materials
Students with disabilities need access to course materials at the same time as all other students. Faculty who proactively create a and post accessible learning materials on Blackboard are meeting the accessibility needs of our students. The Access Center is responsible for providing students with accessible formated textbooks upon request.
The Access Center staff can assist faculty and staff in a variety of ways so that students with disabilities have equal access to all the University's programs, activities and services. Staff can: Meet with instructors and students to discuss possible teaching strategies and accommodations; Assist in converting class materials into accessible format or advise on other types of auxiliary aids; Assist in arranging for students to take exams with accommodations; Consult with academic departments on issues such as adaptive technology, appropriate accommodations, and classroom instruction for students with disabilities; conduct in-service training; and provide literature about particular disabilities. The Access Center offers training on a variety of topics including disability etiquette, ADA compliance issues, and creating accessible course materials. Please contact our front desk to inquire about scheduling an individual or group training, firstname.lastname@example.org, 303-615-0200.
Accommodations should not be provided to a student who has not provided you with a "ADA Faculty Notification Letter". This letter verifies that the student is registered with the Access Center and lists what accommodations the student is eligible to receive.
Students with disabilities have a right to meet with you privately regarding their accommodations, and their confidentiality must be maintained. You are required to treat all disability-related information as highly confidential medical information.
Many disabilities are not obvious. Only the student can decide to disclose his or her disability, request accommodations, or decide to pursue information about services available through the Access Center. Even if you perceive the student as having a disability, you should not ask the student about it, discuss disability-related accommodations, or suggest that s/he see the Access Center unless the student introduces the topic of disability and accommodation.
Faculty and staff are required to refer students to the Access Center if they are requesting accommodations based on their disability. The Access Center is the designated campus office to assess eligibility and approve appropriate accommodations and auxiliary aids for students with disabilities.