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Disability Services

Faculty FAQS

Q: Is it fair to give extra time to students with disabilities when other students have to work under time constraints?
A: Yes. Other students do not have a disability which significantly impedes their ability to process information quickly or causes problems with seeing or writing. So yes, it is fair as long as the adjustment does not fundamentally alter the nature of the course.

Q: Do I have the right to give a student needing testing adjustments another form of the class exam?
A: Yes. If the exam is not scheduled in the same time frame as the class exam, then you can reformat the exam to protect the integrity of the exam. However, the reformatted test would still need to cover the same information as the class exam.

Q: What does is done to ensure that a student does not cheat on an exam?
A: Tests are administered by Testing Services. Students are only allowed to take into the testing room those aides for the exam that have been approved. In addition, all bluebooks, Scranton, blank paper and dictionaries are closely examined to ensure that nothing is written on them. Students are not allowed to take book bags, fanny packs, purses or other such items into the testing room.

Q: What happens if a student with a disability frequently causes unwarranted classroom disruptions?
A: Students with a disability are held to the same Student Conduct Code as everyone else. Their disability does not act as a “get out of jail free card”. Instructors are encouraged to consult with DS for possible intervention.

Q: My course requires classroom participation and attendance. This is clearly stated on my syllabus and is a part of every student’s grade. What do I do with students whose disability causes them to be absent a significant amount of time?
If classroom attendance and participation are deemed to be essential components of your class and it is written as such in your syllabus, then all students have to be held to the same standard. It is the hope of the DS office that faculty will work with students who must miss occasional classes for disability reasons.

Q: I have quizzes everyday in my class. Must all of these quizzes be administered outside of the classroom through DS?
A: It really depends on the student and the type of disability. Many students can complete a simple five minute quiz in the classroom setting. However, some cannot and will need to arrange for Testing Services to administer the quizzes.

Q: I have a policy of giving no makeup exams. Must I allow a student with a disability to make up an exam missed due to their disability?
A: Yes. If a student misses an exam for disability related reasons, they are legally entitled to a makeup exam.

Q: I do not allow students to tape record my lectures. Are students with disabilities that need to tape record a class lecture legally entitled to do so?
A: Yes. However, you can require that all tapes be returned to you at the end of the semester or that they be destroyed.

Q: How do I know what adjustments a student is eligible for?
A: You will receive a Confirmation of Eligibility for Academic Adjustments Letter for the DS office from each student with a disability enrolled in your course that requires adjustments.

Q: What if I provide adjustments which are not on the sheet or the student asks for an adjustment that is not listed?
A: You are only required to provide those adjustments listed on the sheet. If you decide to provide an adjustment not approved through DS, then that is your individual choice.

Q: What about English As A Second Language (ESL) students? They often request additional time to complete an in-class exam due to their unfamiliarity with the English language.
A: You are not required to provide extended time for in-class exams to ESL students unless they have a documented disability which requires it.

Q: What happens if I decide not to allow a student a DS approved adjustment?
A: Students will be provided with all adjustments approved through DS unless the instructor can prove an adjustment will fundamentally alter the nature of a course or program. Students do reserve the right to file a formal complaint with the Office of Civil Rights if denied adjustments. In addition, there have been cases where students have filed for punitive damages against a faculty member.

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