Best Practices for Accommodating Students with Disabilities

  1. Review the Best Practices for Classroom Accessibility attachment from Educational Support and Disability Services (ESDS)
  2. Review the Disability Services Faculty Resources Site
  3. Please do not make informal accommodations with students, it’s important to formalize the process. Please contact Dawn Shafer about this if you have questions
  4. If a student has an accommodation for extra time and/or a testing location with minimal distraction, use the testing center. Please do not try to make alternative arrangements; this has been a point of concern among students
    1. Zanne Gogan is the testing center direction and is eager to assist:
  5. Include the new language on your syllabus. This replaces the old language
  6. Make your power points available ahead of time. This is particularly important for students with limited sight, but is beneficial for all students
  7. Dawn Shafer is the ESDS liaison for SSW and am always happy to talk with you or help facilitate discussions with students. The ESDS staff are also able to answer questions
  8. Best practices regarding service animals at the SSW and SsW-affiliated areas:

*Please note that service animals are a right under ADA and, as such, do not require an accommodation through ESDS. Emotional Support Animals are not covered under ADA and are not permitted in the SSW.

Service animals are essentially akin to other assistive devices, such as wheelchairs, which may help to put the following recommendations for working with our MSW students into context:

  1. Do not ask the student about the animal
  2. Do not acknowledge the animal
  3. Do not begin or engage in dialogue about the animal, either in class or in field placement
  4. Do not attempt to pet the animal

Also, it is reasonable to follow the student’s lead and engage differently with the animal if the student indicates that is their preference. 

If other students report feeling fearful of, or being allergic to, the service animal, please direct them to speak with me directly, or to contact the Educational Support and Disability Office (ESDS) to discuss the possibility of receiving a related accommodation.

Lastly, please encourage students to be in touch with Dawn Shafer directly if there is anything that they’d like to discuss or suggest related to accessibility within the school and university. She is eager to work with students to increase their sense of inclusion within SSW.

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