Faculty and Staff Resources
Campus compliance with the ADA is a shared responsibility. We all play an important role in providing equitable access for students with disabilities. DAR partners with you to fulfill that responsibility and ensure students have access to academics, programs and facilities.
We know that accessible digital content is important to you. We are working on creating our own materials and tutorials, and we will be posting them here. In the meantime, we invite you to start with three simple steps:
- Include an accessibility statement on every communication with students. It could be as simple as:
If you have questions about access or are a student needing accommodations for a disability, please contact me. I will ask that you connect with Disability and Accessibility Resources if you haven't already.
- Anticipate the need for captions. Recorded video can be captioned with software programs, manually or by using third party vendors such as rev.com. Google Meet uses artificial intelligence (a.i.) to produce live captions. For some students, a.i. captions are not enough to ensure access, so be sure you have an accessibility statement even if you create with accessibility in mind.
- Create documents accessible for screen readers. To accomplish this, we recommend you check out the University of Minnesota's AccessibleU. For Google docs and Word docs, you can start with six core skills. To format an accessible syllabus, watch AccessibleU's formating an accessible syllabus playlist on YouTube.
- WHY ACCESSIBILITY?
- Accessibility is about being proactive. Hope is legally required to ensure that our physical spaces, electronic content and learning environments are accessible for students with disabilities. With a little more thought and planning during the beginning stages, we can create accessible and inclusive experiences from the outset rather than attempt to retrofit a program, event or course when a student runs into a barrier.
- WHAT ARE REASONABLE ACCOMMODATIONS?
When we are not able to create inherently accessible environments, reasonable accommodations can be provided to mitigate barriers. Reasonable accommodations refer to modifications or adjustments to the materials, tasks, methods or environment that allows students equal access to academic content, programs and student life.
- FACULTY RIGHTS
- Maintain the academic integrity of your course(s).
- Require students to demonstrate mastery of essential knowledge and competencies of course content.
- Expect the same behavior standards are met by each student in your course.
- Request academic accommodation verification of students’ eligibility for any requested accommodations. Disability and Accessibility Resources (DAR) is the only office designated to review disability documentation and determine eligibility for appropriate accommodations.
- Expect the student to initiate accommodation requests.
- Expect DAR staff to administer exams in a secure and monitored environment.
- FACULTY RESPONSIBILITIES
- Maintain confidentiality.
- Identify and establish essential functions, skills, abilities, and knowledge of your course content, and use this information to evaluate all students in your course.
- Provide accommodations only to students who are registered with Disability and Accessibility Resources (DAR). It is not your responsibility to provide accommodations to students who are not registered with DAR.
- Refer students to DAR who have self-disclosed about a disability but may not be registered and could benefit from services.
- Administer accommodations as approved by DAR. Contact DAR to discuss any concerns about an approved accommodation.
- If students believe accommodations are not meeting disability-related needs, refer them back to DAR.
- Use a syllabus statement and class announcements to invite students to discuss their learning needs.
- Fill out test request forms.
- Be sure course materials are accessible. Contact DAR if you have questions about captioning, transcripts or creating accessible documents.
- STUDENT CONFIDENTIALITY
- Disability-related information shared by students should be treated and protected as confidential medical information. This includes verbal communication, email and printed information.
- Faculty do NOT have the right to ask students if they have a disability.
- For those students with documented disabilities, faculty 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.