This and that…

Syllabus Statements…

The Office of Civil Rights (OCR) requires colleges to inform students with disabilities of the services available to them. While that information is certainly available to students in a variety of other venues, OCR strongly suggests that tools such as syllabus statements are among the most effective methods of reinforcing this knowledge.

Frequently students are reluctant to access services because they have been shy about coming into my office, because they are not clear about what is available to them, or because they are concerned that they will somehow appear to be different. A well written syllabus statement can help to normalize this process into another necessary piece of administrative detail, on a par with assignment dates and absence policies. The goal would be to encourage eligible students to get in touch with the Support Service Office early in the semester, rather than later, when they may already be caught in a frustrating and unproductive cycle of behavior, or, equally awkward, keep them from waiting until exam time to raise the issue at all. Syllabus statements certainly will not eliminate this behavior completely, but may help support a few more students as they work at being independent learners.

The following statements are suggestions only and may be adapted or accommodated depending on the structure of the course or an individual instructors language preferences.

 

  1. Students with disabilities, whether physical, psychological, or learning, who believe that they may need accommodations in this class are encouraged to contact the Learning Specialist as soon as possible to ensure that such accommodations are implemented in a timely fashion. Please meet with the Learning Specialist to verify your eligibility for accommodation and/or academic assistance related to your disability. She/he can be reached at the Student
    Support Center (728-1278)or by email (rgoodall@vtc.edu).
    Information regarding services and supports, as well as documentation requirements, is available at theStudent Support
    Center.
  2. Anyone who feels they may be eligible for an accommodation based on the impact of a disability should contact me to arrange an appointment to discuss the course format and the sorts of supports that may be needed. I rely on the Learning Specialist Office for assistance in verifying the need for accommodations and developing accommodation strategies. If you have not contacted the Learning Specialist, I encourage you to do so. She is available at the Student Support Center (728-1278), or by email at (rgoodall@vtc.edu)
  3. In compliance with college policy and equal access laws, I am available to discuss appropriate accommodations that you may require as a student with a disability. Request for accommodations should be made at the beginning of the semester, except for unusual circumstances, so arrangements can be made. Students are encouraged to contact the Learning Specialist (728-1278 or rgoodall@vtc.edu) for information regarding disability verification and for the determination of reasonable accommodations.
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