Rights and Responsibilities
Educational access is the provision of classroom accommodations, auxiliary aids and services to ensure equal educational opportunities for all students regardless of disability. Creating equal educational opportunities is a collaborative effort between the student, the faculty member, and the Center for Student Success (CSS).
Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990 protect students with disabilities from discrimination that may occur as a result of misconceptions, attitudinal barriers, and/or failure of the institution to provide appropriate accommodations, auxiliary aids, or services. Examples of accommodations and auxiliary aids include, but are not limited to: qualified interpreters, note takers, extra time for exams, and educational materials in alternate format (i.e. Braille, audiotape, enlarged print).
- Students with disabilities - A disability includes any physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activity.
- Faculty - Instructors are assisted in their responsibility to teach all students in their classes and to provide equal access to education.
- Center for Student Success - Our office provides a system for service coordination in order to better meet student needs.
- Malone University - By providing educational access for all students, the college meets its mandated responsibilities and enhances campus diversity.
Principles of ACCESS
- A - Accessibility: Faculty members play a major role in making their classrooms accessible to all students.
- C - Communication: It is imperative that students with disabilities, faculty members, and the CSS communicate on a regular basis.
- C - Confidentiality: CSS and all instructors must respect a student's right to confidentiality.
E - Eligibility: for Accommodations: The Director of Accessibility Services in the CSS determines eligibility for federally mandated academic accommodations and services.
- S - Student Responsibility: Students have a responsibility in ensuring they get the necessary services.
S - Support: Both faculty and CSS staff work together to support students in their legal right to access an education.
Faculty Rights and Responsibilities
Faculty have the right to:
- Request verification of a student's eligibility for any requested accommodations. Such verification will be in the form of a letter written by the Director of Accessibility Services in the CSS and delivered by the student directly to the instructors. The Director is the only staff member permitted to review disability documentation and determine eligibility for appropriate accommodations.
- Expect the student to initiate accommodation requests.
- If the student is taking their tests in the Center for Student Success, expect our staff to administer exams in a secure and monitored environment.
Faculty have the responsibility to:
- Identify and establish essential functions, abilities, skills, and knowledge of their courses and evaluate students on this basis. Students with disabilities should meet the same course expectations as their peers.
- Provide accommodations only to students who are registered with the CSS. It is NOT their responsibility to provide accommodations to students who are not registered with the CSS.
Use a syllabus statement and class announcements to invite students to disclose their needs. A fast fact sheet is available on our CSS/faculty information page.
- Act immediately upon getting a student's request for accommodations by contacting the Director of Accessibility Services in the CSS (if unsure about request) or by providing the service.
- If a student needs their books on tape, please provide CSS with textbook names (including author, publisher, edition, copyright) well before classes begin (5 weeks prior to the start of the semester is recommended) in order for the tapes to be located or actually made for the student. With such timely consideration, students with disabilities who have alternative media needs for accommodations and instructional access will be best served. Converting print materials is both labor and time intensive.
- Work to ensure that all audio-visual materials used in class are accessible (e.g., that videos shown are captioned for students with hearing impairments and that the VCR equipment used has captioning capabilities, or that videos shown will be made with auditory description in some way or that written transcripts will be provided, etc.)
- Consider incorporating principles of Universal Design for Learning in their teaching. A fast fact sheet is available on Universal Design from the Director of Accessibility Services in the CSS.
- Treat and protect all disability-related information as confidential medical information. For example, keep printed items, such as accommodation request letters or emails regarding student disability-related information in a protected location.
- Clearly communicate testing procedures with the student and the Coordinator of Test Services in the CSS if the student will be testing in the Center.
- Consult with students with disabilities and CSS in providing appropriate accommodations
Please Note: Instructors do NOT have the right to ask students if they have a disability. For those students with documented disabilities, instructors do NOT have the right to ask about the nature of the disability. However, if students choose to disclose their disability, this information should be treated confidentially.
Student Rights and Responsibilities
Students have the right to:
- Expect all disability-related information to be treated confidentially.
- Receive appropriate accommodations in a timely manner from faculty or the CSS. Students should have the opportunity to meet privately with faculty to discuss accommodations and any other concerns. Please keep in mind that the Director of Accessibility Services in the CSS is the only staff member designated to review disability documentation and determine eligibility for appropriate accommodations.
Students have the responsibility to:
Provide Center for Student Success with appropriate documentation of the disability.
- Go to the instructor's office during his/her posted office hours or make an appointment with the instructor to facilitate privacy when requesting accommodations.
- Initiate requests for specific accommodations in a timely manner, preferably prior to the start of the semester.
- Follow procedures with faculty and the CSS in order to use appropriate accommodations. When arranging for exam accommodations in the Center for Student Success, first reserve the testing room 10-14 days prior to the exam date. Then contact the instructor for delivery of the exam materials and instructions to the CSS prior to the time of the examination. That office will deliver the completed exam back to the faculty member.
- Inform CSS of the materials needed in alternate format as soon as possible.
- Notify faculty/CSS immediately when an accommodation is not being provided completely or correctly.
- Notify faculty/CSS immediately when a decision has been made to not use an accommodation or the accommodation is no longer needed.
- Provide for own personal independent living needs or other personal disability-related needs. For example, coordinating services of personal care attendants or acquiring homework assistance are student responsibilities and are not the responsibilities of the CSS.
- Act as own advocates. Work with counselors on developing advocacy skills and communicating specific needs and accommodations to faculty.
CSS Rights and Responsibilities
The Center for Student Success (CSS) has the right to:
- Receive the appropriate documentation from the student prior to the services being initiated.
- Expect students and faculty to work cooperatively with the CSS to facilitate academic accommodations.
- Deny unreasonable academic accommodations, adjustments, and/or auxiliary services.
- Accommodations cannot impose undue hardship to, or fundamentally alter, a program or activity of Malone.
The Center for Student Success (CSS) has the responsibility to:
Collect, evaluate, securely house disability documentation and determine eligibility for services.
- Treat and protect all disability-related information as confidential medical information.
- Meet with the student privately in an accessible location to discuss disability-related needs.
- See to it that exams are administered as directed in a secure and monitored environment.
- Provide appropriate accommodations in collaboration with the instructor and student.
- Provide print materials in accessible format once the faculty member and student identifies them.
- Communicate procedures clearly to the student and the faculty.
- Assist students with disabilities in understanding their strengths and functional limitations. Provide them with the skills to become self-advocates.
Definitions of Terms
Alternative media: Print material that has been converted to a format that enables a print impaired person to read the materials. This includes: taped materials, Braille, and enlarged print.
Auxiliary aids: Services, equipment, and procedures that allow students with disabilities access to learning and activities in and out of the classroom. They include: sign language interpreters, real time captioning services, alternative media, exam accommodations, etc.
Exam accommodations: Legally mandated services that allow students with disabilities to exhibit their knowledge on exams by using auxiliary aids which include but are not limited to: extra time, screen readers, scribes, large print, distraction reduced environment, etc.
Universal design: An approach to designing course instruction, materials, and content to benefit people of all learning styles without adaptation or retrofitting. Universal design provides equal access to learning, not simply equal access to information. Universal design allows the student to control the method of accessing information while the teacher monitors the learning process and initiates any beneficial methods.