Disability Services is committed to supporting an inclusive campus environment that celebrates disability as diversity and provides students with disabilities an equal opportunity to participate in the educational process.
Sample syllabus statement
Central Washington University is committed to creating a learning environment that meets the needs of its diverse student body. If you anticipate or experience any barriers to learning, discuss your concerns with the instructor. Students with disabilities should contact Disability Services to discuss a range of options to removing barriers, including accommodations. Student Disability Services is located in Hogue 126. Call (509) 963-2214 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
More information about inclusive syllabus statements.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do accommodations give students an unfair advantage?
No. Reasonable accommodations are legally mandated and are intended to provide students with documented disabilities an opportunity to be evaluated based on ability, not disability.
Can I set a deadline for accepting accommodation requests for the quarter?
No. Students can request accommodations at any time in the quarter, however, accommodations are not retroactive. You are not expected to change grades earned without accommodations prior to self-identification by the student.
Am I required to lower the standards of a required assignment because the student has a disability?
No. Standards should be the same for all students. Accommodations provide equal access to the educational process, not guaranteed success.
I suspect a student has a disability. How can I suggest the student talk to DS?
Tell the student you have noticed they are struggling; then provide information about campus resources, listing DS as one of several resources.
Can I ask students about their disabilities?
You can ask students about their needs related to learning and fulfilling the requirements of your course, but you should avoid asking specific questions about their disability. Please respect student privacy and do not share information about accommodations or a student's disability without permission.
Exam accommodations include extended time, use of assistive technology, permission to take the test in a quiet or private location or other specific conditions. Scheduling accommodated exams requires collaboration between the student, faculty and if necessary Testing Services.
Extended time is based on the amount of time time provided to other students in the class NOT the length of time that the professor feels it should take to complete the exam. Read more about the Office of Civil Rights ruling on extended exam time.
Exam accommodations apply to all timed assessments including online tests and pop quizzes.
Other academic accommodations
Permission to record lectures
Students must comply with the CWU Lecture Recording Agreement.
Lecture recording is not intended to replace class attendance and students must be present in class to use this accommodation. A professor may not refuse to allow a student to record lectures if it is an approved accommodation. Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act
addresses this issue.
Reasonable sensitivity to disability related absences
Students who have disabilities that are episodic in nature may be given this accommodation. The Office of Civil Rights (OCR) has provided criteria that faculty should consult when determining if flexibility is appropriate. Flexible Attendance Guidelines
ASL interpreter or Real-time transcription
Interpreters and transcribers will be scheduled by the DS office. If you have questions about where the interpreter needs to sit or other logistical issues, please ask the student and interpreter-they are the experts!
All multimedia content including online video clips, narrated presentations, and DVDs used in class must be captioned or subtitled in advance of the class session in which they are used. Are captions necessary?
Class materials in an accessible format.
Any information presented to the class, including the course syllabus, Power Point Presentations, and any handouts that are distributed (either in hardcopy or digitally) must be available in an accessible format. Central Access
is able to help convert PDFs or inaccessible documents into accessible materials.
Assistive Technology in the Classroom
Assistive technology can include amplification systems for students who are Hard of Hearing. Professors may be asked to wear a small microphone.
Avoid next day assignments when possible.
Professors are encouraged to be flexible when giving students short periods of time to complete assignments.
By anticipating diversity in the classroom and designing classes that allow for multiple methods of presentation, expression and engagement, instructors can reduce the need for accommodations and make learning more accessible to all students.
Requests That Are Up to Your Discretion
Requests for preferential seating, the ability to drink or eat in class, to stand up, stretch, elevate legs or leave the classroom briefly due to a disability are issues that can be addressed without the involvement of DS. Faculty members are encouraged to use professional judgment and flexibility when faced with this type of request.
Contact Wendy Holden at Student Disability Services with questions or concerns.